FOTD: September 17, 2019 Thistle

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Chicken and Sausage Jambalya

This is one of my favorite recipes when I’m not trying to watch how many carbs I am eating. The first thing that I do is to cut up all the vegetables that I will use in the recipe. Then I cut the sausage into round bite-sized pieces. Most Cajun’s use andouille sausage, but here in Texas I use Kountry Boy’s Sausage, beef and pork. I cook it for a few minutes even though it is precooked just to get a little of the grease out of it. While that is cooling, I cut up the chicken into bite-sized pieces. I use boneless, skinless chicken thighs so that it doesn’t take as long to prepare the recipe. Next I measure my rice, broth, and seasonings. Now I’m ready to go. Actually you could probably do all of the above the night before and have things ready to make the next day.

Then in a very deep large pot I use about 2 tablespoons of olive oil to saute the veggies. Once they are starting to soften I add the sausage and chicken and cook them until the chicken is cooked all the way through. Then I add my rice, seasonings, and broth and stir the whole mixture. At this point I reduce the heat from medium high to a little above medium low. Cover the pot and cook for about 30 minutes until the rice absorbs all of the broth. I stir about every 5-10 minutes so that the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

Ingredients:

2 T olive oil

2 ribs of celery

1 onion

1 red, 1 yellow and 1 green bell pepper

1 small jalapeno pepper, seeds and spines removed

4 cloves of garlic

boneless, skinless chicken thighs, about 2.5 pounds

sausage links, about 7

4c. chicken broth

Cajun seasoning, I use Tony Cachere’s (mild) about 1T.

1 bay leaf, remove when finished cooking

1 t. crushed thyme

1/8 t cayenne pepper

The best thing about this recipe is that you can play with it and make it your own. For most recipes, I’m measuring every single ingredient and being extremely precise. For this recipe, it really depends on who I’ m cooking it for. If it’s the grandkids, not so spicy. If it’s just adults, I add more heat. We don’t really like extremely spicy foods, so it should not be overly seasoned, for my family. But if you like the heat, go ahead and add more spice. Just remember to keep stirring as you cook so that it doesn’t stick. This recipe serves 8-10.

Okra: Love It or Hate It

I think of okra as the raw oyster of vegetables. You either love to eat it, or the thought of doing so makes you sick. It’s just so slimy!! Luckily, I love it. My favorite way to eat it is to make gumbo with it. I also like to boil it or saute it with onions and tomatoes. You can help to make it less slimy by cooking it with tomatoes.

My husband grows lots and lots of okra. There is more in another area of our garden. We freeze it and eat it all year long. The above picture shows our plants when they are small. It is just about time to trim the bottom leaves off the plants. Rubbing up against the leaves makes you itch, so he tries to keep the leaves to a minimum while having enough of them to produce the vegetable.

The actual okra pods start producing from the bottom of the plant and move upward as the year goes by. Okra likes really hot weather, which we have no problem with here in Texas in the summer. It will produce until a frost kills the plants.