Funny thing happened a couple of days ago...
52 Uses for a Rotisserie Chicken" series ...
One Chicken recipe for every card in a poker deck (or week in a year). From soups to salads... Pizzas to Casseroles... An INCREDIBLE Garlic Garlic Chicken and Dumplings (hint, the Dumplings are made from the same recipe they make copycat Garlic Biscuits over at Red Lobster)... A hearty Gumbo, a FAST and EASY Spanish paella, Several of the most popular Chinese take out dishes...Any way... In the midst of my celebration, I noticed that there was a GLARING OMISSION... My very favorite Cajun/New Orleans recipe of all time... JAMBALAYA!
So, I guess this is going to count as the Joker in my deck of Recipes, since there is NO better use for a Rotisserie Chicken than this dish!
Late one evening a traveling gentleman stopped by a New Orleans inn which had little food remaining from the evening meal. The traveler instructed the cook, "Jean, balayez!" or "Jean, sweep something together!" in the local dialect. The guest pronounced the resulting hodge-podge dish as "Jean balayez."
Drink a little (or a lot) hurricane or sazerac cocktail and you start slurring your words... Jean balayez becomes JAMBALAYA!
That's probably not true, but makes a great story.
New Orleans School of Cooking. By far, it was the most popular of the main course recipes I learned during my trips to New Orleans. Easy Peasy, so lets get to it.
Mise en Place (first, assemble your ingredients)
1/2 cup oil (divided)
2 pounds meat from a Rotisserie Chicken boned, cut into 1 inch cubes..
2 pounds Andouille Sausage, cut into 1/2 inch slices
......Save 1/2 pound to grill and use as accents
4 cups Onion
2 cups Green Pepper (I had a yellow as well)
2 cups Celery
3 Tablespoons Garlic
5 cups Chicken Stock
4 cups Long Grained Rice
1/4 cup Cajun Spices
1/2 cup Green onion
2 cups tomatoes (optional)
- Optional - For brown Jambalaya, add heaping tablespoon of Brown Sugar to your roux just before adding vegetables (see next step), for red, add Paprika for color
- In a large stock pot , make a roux with equal parts 1/4 cup oil and flour. It is VERY important to start with a clean pan. It must be free of food particles to make a successful roux. Add vegetables and later garlic to roux and stir continuously until vegetables reach desired tenderness.
- Add Chicken and sausage to vegetables, continue to stir for about 5 minutes.
- Gradually stir in stock and Cajun seasonings. Bring to boil
- For red Jambalaya, add 1/4 cup paprika and you can substitute 1/2 the stock for 1/2 tomato juice or V-8 juice.
- Add rice, DO NOT STIR, but push gently on rice to get it under liquid and return to boil
- Reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 25 minutes. DO NOT OPEN POT, DO NOT STIR.
- While the pot is cooking, slice 1/2 pound Andouille Sausage and fry in sauce pan till pretty char marks appear.
- After 25 minutes, turn rice from top to bottom, mix meat and rice evenly. There may be some burnt bits on the bottom, but that is FILLED with flavor, and should be mixed in as well/
- Dish it up, add sausage and green onions as accent.
- Have Hot sauce and additional seasonings available for people who want to taste the Cajun experience to their fullest.
It really does all come together quickly... not a 30 minute meal, but depending on your knife skills it is less than 30 minutes hands on cooking. Especially if you use one of my beloved Store Bought, Pre-cooked, Pre-seasoned Rotisserie Chicken.
And of course the Rotisserie Chicken makes this fast and easy to make. Making this the Joker in the deck to my "52 Uses For a Rotisserie Chicken"! So many layers of flavors, the exotic tastes do remind me of the Crescent City... But easily accessible with easy to find ingredients!
What could be easier and tastier?
I think I am also going to make this a controversial addition to me list of "52 Recipes for Soup, Chowder and Chili". (work in progress, but I have a bunch posted already). After all, anything that uses 5 cups of Chicken Stock can't be dismissed so quickly as not a soup... Can it???
And as always, if you like this recipe and think you might want to give it a try, pin this to your Pinterest Board and be sure to follow me on Pinterest if you want to see the rest of my 52 Ideas!