Jambalaya

Jambalaya (On The Bayou)

     It was in the 1950s when country music legend, Hank Williams, released a slew of hits. One of my favorites was “On The Bayou,” a song he wrote along with Moon Mullican. It was number one on the country charts for fourteen consecutive weeks, and it also had huge success as a crossover tune. It’s a song that celebrates good times, good music, good lovin’, and Cajun cuisine.

     Although Hank was born and reared an Alabama boy, he did spend some time in Shreveport. I’m assuming this is where he learned about the habits and behaviors of the residents of Louisiana, and when he acquired a taste for their spicy cuisine. I’m featuring a recipe for jambalaya which was one of the dishes mentioned in the song’s lyrics. Because of the addition of tomatoes, this recipe is considered to be a Creole-style red jambalaya denoting an Italian influence.

     Most Louisiana cooks think of a recipe as merely a suggestion as to what should go into the cooking pot. In keeping with this approach, my recipe allows for lots of flexibility. Ingredients can be added or deleted depending on everyone’s tastes and what’s in your refrigerator; besides, it’s been said “jambalaya is just a Cajun word for last week’s leftovers.”

     As for the other Louisiana favorites mentioned in “On The Bayou,” you’ll have to search the internet to get recipes for a crawfish pie and fillet gumbo. As for what’s in your fruit jar, well, that’s your personal choice. As for ma cher amio and me, our fruit jar would contain a nice Zinfandel.  

Jambalaya (On The Bayou)

yields: -6 Servings prep time: 20 Minutes cook time: 70 Minutes
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Ingredients

1 lb. 1 lb. 1 tsp To taste 1 tsp 1 1/2 Tbsp 1 Tbsp 1 lb. 3/4 cup 1 Tbsp 3/4 cup 3/4 cup 3/4 cup 14 oz. can 2 1 tsp 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 cups 1 cup 1/8 cup 1/4 cup
Shrimp Chicken breast cubed Paprika Salt and pepper Thyme Hot sauce EVOO Andouille sausage sliced into rounds Onions red coursely diced Garlic minced Bell pepper green Bell pepper yellow Celery chopped Crushed tomatoes Bay leaves Worcestershire sauce Steak sauce Chicken stock Rice Parsley chopped Scallions or green onions chopped
  • 1 lb.
    Shrimp
  • 1 lb.
    Chicken breast cubed
  • 1 tsp
    Paprika
  • To taste
    Salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp
    Thyme
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp
    Hot sauce
  • 1 Tbsp
    EVOO
  • 1 lb.
    Andouille sausage sliced into rounds
  • 3/4 cup
    Onions red coursely diced
  • 1 Tbsp
    Garlic minced
  • 3/4 cup
    Bell pepper green
  • 3/4 cup
    Bell pepper yellow
  • 3/4 cup
    Celery chopped
  • 14 oz. can
    Crushed tomatoes
  • 2
    Bay leaves
  • 1 tsp
    Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    Steak sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups
    Chicken stock
  • 1 cup
    Rice
  • 1/8 cup
    Parsley chopped
  • 1/4 cup
    Scallions or green onions chopped

Directions

Ahead of time chop the sausage, onions, garlic bell peppers, and celery. Store in glass bowl.

Also combine the shrimp, chicken breasts, paprika, salt and pepper, thyme, and hot sauce. Store in a metal bowl.

Enter Target Time _______________

Time: __________ (70 minutes prior to target time)

  1. Heat EVOO over medium heat in a Dutch oven. This recipe will fill it about ½ full.

  2. Add Andouille sausage and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes to brown on each side.

  3. Add onions and sauté another 5 minutes.

  4. Stir in shrimp and chicken mixture, garlic, peppers, and celery, and sauté for 3 minutes.

  5. Stir in remaining ingredients except rice and bring to boil.

  6. Once your guests have assembled, add rice. Lower heat, cover the Dutch oven, and simmer until rice is cooked (20-25 minutes). Do not overcook or you will have a paste (the rice will lose its integrity.

  7. Remove from heat and stir in parsley and scallions.

  8. Remove bay leaves and spoon into bowls.

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