Sunday, March 20, 2011

Shrimp and Sausage Jambalaya with Brown Rice

This recipe has been a work in progress. The issue with making a good brown rice jambalaya is the rice. You need to use the right kind of brown rice. Take the effort and seek out the Uncle brand. You are looking for instant brown rice NOT fully cooked. I have found out, through trial and error, that there is a huge difference in the quality of brown rice on your megamart shelves. Instant brown rice is a pantry staple in my kitchen as it cooks up in less than ten minutes. It packs so much more fiber and overall nutrition than its white counterpart. One of the best features of this recipe, is it all cooks together in one pot. There is nothing worse than a weeknight recipe that has you getting out all your pots in your cabinet and then having to clean them. Listen up RR!

Brown Rice Jambalaya
Serves 4

2T Extra virgin olive oil
1 red bell pepper diced
1 green pepper diced
1 onion diced
3 cloves of garlic run through a garlic press
1/2t. dried thyme
1t. dried oregano
1t. paprika
2 bay leaves
1T tomato paste
14.5oz can of diced tomatoes
2 1/2c low sodium chicken stock
1c instant brown rice. The brand with the bald relative on the box
1package lean smoked turkey sausage cut into 1 inch half moons.
2 10oz packages frozen peeled, deveined, and tail off shrimp (19-25 count per pound)
1t. Kosher salt
1/2t. Freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat olive in in an 8qt. Dutch oven over medium high heat. Cook the sausage for 5 minutes or until it browns. Sauté peppers and onions for 6 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one more minute.

2. Add spices and tomato paste and cook for 4 minutes. You want to cook the tomato paste in this step as it will help deepen the overall flavor of the dish. Adding dried herbs and cooking them will help release their essential oils aka more flavor!

3. Add canned tomatoes, stock and rice. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, take off the lid and test the rice for doneness. If it is not done, continue to cook and check at 2 minute intervals.

4. Add shrimp and turn off the heat. Place the lid back on and let the shrimp cook in the residual heat of the pot for 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

A serving size is a whopping 2 cups.

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