After years of tooling and re-tooling our go-to Jambalaya recipe, we think we've come up with the best Jambalaya we've ever tasted, and our friends think so, too! Loaded with sausage, shrimp, ham, chicken and Cajun flavors, we think you'll agree this is the perfect dish for Mardi Gras and chilly winter nights. —Sarah
1 3-5 pounds
Fryer (or equivalent chicken pieces - white and dark meat) cooked
Hot smoked sausage
Smoked ham, diced
Raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
Green or red bell pepper, chopped
Large cloves garlic, minced
Fresh Italian parsley, chopped
6 oz. can tomato paste
Yellow onion, chopped
16 oz. cans tomatoes - diced (or equivalent fresh)
Chicken broth (plus additional as needed)
Green onions, sliced thin
Fresh or frozen okra (optional)
Freshly ground black pepper
Lon grain white rice, rinsed under water 3 times until water runs clear
Rinse rice (important), and then par-cook by bringing 6 cups of water to a boil and cooking the 3 cups rice according to package directions, covered, for 10 minutes. Once done, set aside in a bowl.
In a large pot, sauté sausage till cooked through; remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Pour off most of the drippings, if necessary. Also, deglaze sausage crust from bottom of pot with a splash of white wine, if necessary.
Add oil to pot and sauté pepper, garlic, celery and onions 5-6 minutes until soft. Add garlic and sauté 1 additional minute.
If whole or fresh tomatoes are used, chop and reserve liquid. Add tomatoes with liquid, broth and green onions. Stir in tomato paste, spices and seasonings.
Stir in rice. Add sausage, chicken & ham (and okra, if desired), cover and cook 30-45 minutes over low heat, stirring every 10 mins or so.
After most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice and a consistent water balance has been achieved, add shrimp, gently stir in until well distributed, and cook until shrimp are pink, 3-7 minutes. IMPORTANT: Shrimp do NOT take long to cook. Watch them carefully.
Serve with warm, crusty bread.
This dish may be made ahead and reheated before serving. Freezes well.
NOTE: Watch liquid balance during the cooking process, and add additional broth if/as necessary.