There was sausage. There was shrimp. There were Costco Ancient Grains. What can I make? Jambalaya!! What is that you say…
Jambalaya is a Louisiana origin dish of Spanish and French (especially Provençal cuisine) influence, consisting mainly of meat and vegetables mixed with rice. Traditionally, the meat always includes sausage of some sort, often a smoked sausage such as andouille, along with some other meat or seafood, frequently pork, chicken, crawfish, or shrimp. The vegetables are usually a soffritto-like mixture known as the “holy trinity” in Creole and Cajun cooking, consisting of onion, celery, and green bell pepper, though other vegetables such as carrots, tomatoes, chilis, and garlic are also used. After browning and sauteing the meat and vegetables, rice, seasonings, and broth are added and the entire dish is cooked together until the rice is done.
Jambalaya is similar to (but distinct from) other rice-and-meat dishes known in Louisiana cuisine. Gumbo uses similar sausages, meats, seafood, vegetables and seasonings. However, gumbo includes filé powder and okra, which are not common in jambalaya. Gumbo is also usually served over white rice, which is prepared separate from the rest of the dish, unlike jambalaya, where the rice is prepared with the other ingredients. Étouffée is a stew which always includes shellfish such as shrimp or crayfish, but does not have the sausage common to jambalaya and gumbo. Also, like gumbo, étouffée is usually served over separately prepared rice.
Shrimp and Sausage Jambalaya (for TWO people, half the recipe!)
- 12 ounces sausage, sliced into 1/4″ slices (Costco Kielbasa works just fine)
- 2 cups of peeled, deveined shrimp
- 4 cups of chicken broth or stock
- 1 large red bell pepper, diced
- 1 large green bell pepper, diced
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 cup of instant rice/ Ancient Grains
- 2- 14 oz. cans of petite diced tomatoes
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp of dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp of paprika
- 3 cloves of minced garlic or 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 bay leaf
- salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper
In a large stock pot on medium heat, add olive oil, onions, peppers, garlic and the bay leaf. Cook for 5 minutes covered.
Add tomatoes, sausage, chicken broth or stock and remaining seasonings and cook on medium heat for 25 minutes.
Add instant rice (here I used Costco’s Ancient Grains) and shrimp. Stir and cook for 5 minutes or until rice is tender and shrimp turns orange. Cover and let stand for 10 minutes.
What to do when you buy a Costco or grocery store rotisserie chicken and have leftovers? SOUP.
This will easily feed 4 to 6 people as a main course. The ingredients list seems long, but it can be simplified by making the changes noted in red.
Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 1 Rotisserie chicken (half chicken is enough)
- 1 15-ounce can Black beans (drained)
- 2 Carrots
- 2 Celery stalks
- 3 tbsp Cilantro, fresh
- 2 cups Corn, frozen (1 small can or corn or more)
- 3 Garlic cloves
- 1 Lime, wedges
- 1 cups Peas, frozen (1 small can of peas)
- 1 Poblano peppers (Optional)
- 1 Red onion
- 1 Reserved red onion
- 28-ounce can Tomatoes
- 4 cups Chicken broth
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp Taco seasoning (see elsewhere o the blog for homemade taco seasoning)
- 1 tbsp Olive oil, extra-virgin
- Crispy tortilla strips or crushed tortilla chips
- 1 Jalapeno, seeded and minced
- In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot and celery, and sauté until the vegetables start to become tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the Poblano peppers and cook until the vegetables are very tender, 6 to 7 minutes more. Add the jalapeño and garlic, and continue to cook until fragrant, 1 minute more.
- Season the vegetables with the taco seasoning, then stir in the tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring the soup to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until a good flavor develops, 20 to 30 minutes.
- Stir in the chicken, black beans, corn and peas. Return the soup to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with tortilla strips and just maybe, a touch of sour cream.
Thanks to all of you for getting me past the 14000 views this week! You are all awesome. In return is an awesome Aztec recipe for a soup/stew called pozole. Get out your slow cooker.
Pozole can be prepared in many ways. All variations include a base of cooked hominy in broth. Typically pork, or sometimes chicken, is included in the base.
Vegetarian recipes substitute beans for the meat.
The three main types of pozole are blanco/white, verde/green and rojo/red.
Red Pozole is usually made without the green sauce, instead adding a red sauce made from one or more chiles, such as guajillo, piquin, or ancho.
Slow Cooker Easy Pork Pozole
- 2 – 15 oz. cans hominy (white corn), rinsed and drained (fresh in the deli section) In our grocery store here, this is the brand I buy. I use 3/4 package.
- 1 – 16 oz. jar salsa
- 1 – litre reduced sodium chicken broth (I actually used almost 2 to get it less thick)
- 2 – 4 oz. cans diced green chile peppers undrained (to taste, truthfully, I used two thin slices)
- 1 – cup coarsely chopped onion
- 1 – T ground cumin
- 4 – cloves garlic minced
- 1 – tsp. dried oregano, crushed
- ¼ – tsp. red pepper
- 12 oz. – pork loin, cut into bite sized pieces
- Fresh cilantro snipped
In the removable crock pot liner, combine the first 9 ingredients (through the red pepper). Stir in the pork pieces. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Let the liner stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Place in slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 7 hours (depending on your slow cooker)…or on HIGH for 3 to 3.5 hours. Check frequently… mine was done in 5 hours on low!
Sprinkle cilantro onto each serving in large soup bowls. Serve with tortillas if desired.
OPTIONAL – In separate side bowls, provide a few sliced radishes, more chopped onion, oregano, chopped cabbage, avocado, cilantro. Let your guests choose what they want to add. I like to add some sour cream for smoothness.
Makes 6+ servings.
First had this Vietnamese noodle soup in San Francisco, The portions they served were a little large, but awesome.
Spicy Shrimp Pho (http://chefsavvy.com/spicy-shrimp-pho/)
Prep time 10 mins Cook time 20 mins Total time 30 mins Serves: 4
- 4 ounces whole wheat thin spaghetti (I substituted rice noodles for a less heavy Pho)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon jalapeno, minced
- 2 tablespoons green onion, sliced thin
- 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce (or soy sauce)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 cup button mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 12 ounces large shrimp, uncooked
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
- Cook spaghetti until al dente (or prepare rice noodles according to package)
- Meanwhile add oil to a large pot or dutch oven.
- Add garlic, jalapeno and green onions. Saute for 1-2 minutes.
- Pour in chicken stock, fish sauce and sesame oil. Bring to a simmer.
- Stir in mushrooms and shrimp. Simmer until the mushrooms are tender and the shrimp is fully cooked.
- Take off of the heat and stir in pepper, lime juice, and cilantro.
- Divide the noodles among the 4 bowls and pour the soup on top.
- Garnish with extra lime wedges and cilantro if desired.
Took this recipe off of Pinterest – Mom on Timeout, since I had all of the ingredients at hand and felt like a lazy dinner. I am not a fan of BBQ sauce so I omitted it entirely at first. I also changed the amount of beans as you can see by the red… My slow cooker often seems to cook in less time, so I checked it after 3 hours and it was done as well as I like it.
Slow Cooker Kielbasa and Barbecue Beans (Author: Trish – Mom On Timeout)
- 2 large can black beans, drained and rinsed (originally 2 – 15 oz. cans)
- 1 15.8 oz. Great Norther beans, drained and rinsed (instead of two)
- 1 15.25 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 onion, diced
- ½ cup barbecue sauce (omitted and it made no appreciable difference)
- ¾ cup ketchup
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp mustard
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup molasses
- 1 14.5 oz. can chicken broth
- ½ lb. bacon, cooked, cut into bite size pieces
- 2 lbs. Kielbasa, cut into bite size pieces (or less)
- In a large slow cooker, add all of the ingredients except for the kielbasa and stir gently to combine.
- Place the kielbasa on top and cover with the lid.
- Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 4 to 5 hours. (I found it was done on low after 3 hours and kept it on warm for 2 more).
I recommend the low setting for this recipe because on high, the beans tend to get dried out. If you need to cook on high due to time constraints, monitor the beans and add more broth or water if necessary.
What to do when your stove gets taken away for repairs? Three choices – BBQ, Microwave or Slow Cooker. Oh, and company for dinner… Pinterest to the rescue as always. The best part is that we had everything in the house! Hope you will try this sometime soon, it beats cooking inside, as we can put our cooker outside, A great way to enhance the BBQ season!
Slow Cooker Chicken and Corn Chowder
- 4 slices bacon, diced
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 12 ounces red potato, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 cups corn kernels, frozen, canned or roasted
- 4 cups chicken broth 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1 bay leaf
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup half and half
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add bacon and cook until brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; set aside.
- Place chicken, potatoes, onion, carrots, celery, and corn into a 6-qt slow cooker. Stir in chicken broth, garlic, thyme, oregano, cayenne pepper and bay leaf; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Cover and cook on low heat for 7-8 hours or high heat for 3-4 hours.
- In a small bowl, whisk together half and half and cornstarch. Stir in half and half mixture and butter during the last 30 minutes of cooking time.
- Serve immediately, topped with bacon and garnished with chives, if desired.
Okay, so I was going to end this blog once I reached 250 posts! We were heading off on a trip to Oaxaca and Puebla and I thought it was a good time to put this blog to rest. The trip was great and now I am invigorated to continue on. (If you are interested in the latest trip then follow this link – www.oaxaca2016.wordpress.com )
This is another Costco recipe – too many mushrooms again! Hope you will enjoy it. It would be great for a brunch!
4 -5 large boneless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into 1 -inch thick strips
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 cup all-purpose flour to coat the chicken
6 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1 pound fresh mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 medium onion, finely diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
Ingredients for the Sauce:
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour for the sauce
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 cup half and half (or 1/2 cup milk + 1/2 cup heavy cream)’OR plain yogurt
1. Season chicken with salt and pepper and dredge both sides in flour. Heat 3 Tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium/high heat. Once oil is hot, add chicken and sauté until golden. Work in batches if needed so you don’t crowd your pan. Don’t worry about cooking the chicken through; it still needs to go in the oven. Transfer chicken to a 13×9 casserole baking dish.
2. 2. Wipe down the skillet with a paper towel. Add 3 Tbsp oil along with sliced mushrooms and diced onions and sauté until soft and golden. Add garlic and sauté another 1-2 min. Spread mixture over the chicken.
3. 3. In a medium saucepan (or in the same pan you’ve been using), melt 3 Tbsp butter. Whisk in 3 Tbsp flour until lightly golden (1-2 min).
4. Add 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, 1/4 tsp pepper, and whisk until smooth. Add 1 cup half & half and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper to taste
5. 5. Pour sauce over the chicken and mushrooms. Cover with foil and bake at 350˚F for 45 minutes. Serve warm or hot over mashed potatoes, pasta or rice.
Check out more of Natasha’s blog, from where I found this recipe!
Thai is undoubtedly one of my favourite foods and this soup is no exception. Hope you will try it and let me know what you think. And..its from Michael Smith, one of my heroes…LOL. (My apologies to Michael for altering the original as shown)
Thai Coconut Curry Soup from Michael Smith
• 2 Chicken breasts (Good old Costco – I used their chicken strips in a bag – two handfuls partially thawed)
• 1 handful Bean sprouts (I substituted frozen broccoli pieces)
• 1 Carrot, shredded
• 1 bunch Cilantro, roots
• 1 bunch Cilantro, leaves
• 1 small knob Ginger, frozen
• 2 Green onions
• 2 stalks Lemon grass or 1 Tablespoon lemongrass paste
• 4 Lime, leaves
• 2 Limes, zest and juice
• 2 cups Chicken broth
• 2 14 ounce cans Premium coconut milk
• 1 heaping tbsp Thai curry paste
• 2 tbsp Fish sauce or less as you prefer
• 1 Sprinkle or two salt or soy sauce
Pasta & Grains
• 1 8 ounce package Rice noodles (Or skip either of these if you don’t want the starch)
Scoop the thick coconut cream from the top of just one of the cans into a large stockpot set over a medium-high heat. Melt the cream, add the curry paste and stir for a few minutes until they begin to sizzle.
Add the cilantro roots and chicken and sauté until the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
Add the coconut juice from the first can and all the contents of the second can along with the chicken broth, carrot, lime leaves, lemon grass, fish sauce and lime zest and juice. Grate the frozen ginger into the broth with a Microplane grater or standard box grater. Simmer for 20 minutes or so.
OPTIONAL – Stir in the bean sprouts. Add the rice noodles, gently pushing them beneath the surface of the broth. Turn off the heat and let stand until the noodles soften, about 5 minutes. Rice noodles don’t need to simmer like pasta to cook; they simply need to rehydrate in the hot liquid.
Stir in most of the cilantro leaves. Remove the lemon grass stalks. Taste and season with a touch more salt (or soy sauce) as needed. Ladle into large bowls and garnish with the green onions and remaining cilantro leaves.
Thanks again to Costco for selling those huge packages of sliced mushrooms…what to do? Make soup…and it was awesome! Thanks also to Taste of Home website…link at bottom. BONUS…it makes a great sauce for chicken if you have leftovers. I also added some to some rice after it was cooked…
Creamy Mushroom and Bacon Soup
• 10 bacon strips, diced
• 1 pound sliced fresh mushrooms
• 1 medium onion, chopped
• 3 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 quart heavy whipping cream (or Media Crema if you live in Mexico)
• 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chicken broth
• 1-1/4 cups shredded Swiss (or Provolone) cheese
• 3 tablespoons cornstarch
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon pepper
• 3 tablespoons cold water
• 1. In a large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings. In the drippings, saute mushrooms and onion until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in cream and broth. Gradually stir in cheese until melted.
• 2. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch, salt, pepper and water until smooth. Stir into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Garnish with bacon. Yield: 8 servings (2 quarts).