Posts Tagged 'soul food'

Cajun Seasoning

This is a tasty and fiery seasoning which I use on chicken breasts and when I’m making jambalaya. Go easy on the cayenne if you’re not a chilli fan, this is quite pungent.

Cajun Seasoning

2 teaspoon each salt, dried oregano, dried thyme

1 teaspoon each freshly ground black pepper, white pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika and cayenne

Enjoy!

Advertisements

Easy Jambalaya Recipe

Jambalaya is a spicy rice dish which originated in Louisiana, USA. It was allegedly created by Spanish settlers, eager to recreate paella without saffron, which was unavailable to them. Jambalaya is generally Cajun or Creole, the main difference being that Creole includes tomatoes, resulting in a deep-red sauce. Cajun is generally spicier and involves using the “holy trinity” of onions, celery and green pepper.

jambalaya_1

Take a look here for an in-depth history of Jambalaya.

I’ve cooked this so many times, consuming other people’s recipes, adding this and that, tweaking here and there, and this is the best I’ve come up with.

Tips:

  1. Try to use a heavy, cast-iron pot for this, or failing that, a heavy non-stick pot. We need to reduce the risk of burning. Also, cook on a low temperature.
  2. When it comes to vegetables, anything goes; this is a great way to use up vegetables that might be lying around in your fridge. Apart from the obligatory ‘holy trinity’, I like to use carrots, peppers, peas, green beans, sugar snaps, even broccoli. It might not be wholly authentic, but it tastes great. Remember to adjust your cooking times for each vegetable, e.g. add the peas for just a few minutes cooking.
  3. This recipe requires a tablespoon of ‘Cajun spice’ which can be bought as a commercial preparation, but I recommend you make your own. Take a look at this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g chorizo or kabanossi sausage, sliced (should be about 3-4 sausages worth)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 chicken breast fillets, cut into chunks
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 chilli peppers (depending on how hot you like it)
  • 1 green peppers
  • 3 or 4 sticks celery
  • A selection of vegetables (can be anything, see above, I normally dice a large carrot, a red pepper, some green beans, a handful of frozen peas)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp cajun spice
  • 300g long-grain rice (Uncle Ben’s type)
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • salt

Method

  1. Heat olive oil in a heavy pot or casserole. Fry the chrorizo and onion until the onion starts to colour and soften.
  2. Add chicken and garlic and fry until the chicken is browned. Depending on how much oil is surrendered from the chorizo you may need to add a little more oil.
  3. Add  the celery, green peppers, chilli peppers and any other hard vegetables (such as carrot). Fry for 1 or 2 minutes.
  4. Add rice and all of the spices,  then stir well to ensure the rice is well coated.
  5. Add chicken stock and good pinch of salt. Cover the pot and bring to the boil. Simmer gently for about 15 minutes or until rice is cooked. Check the rice is not sticking to the pot occasionally, but try not to stir too much.
  6. Turn heat off and leave covered for another 5 mins. Serve.

Serves 4.