Red Beans & Rice

I hope that everyone had a safe, fun, and delicious holiday! We kept things pretty low key here and watched the Macy’s fireworks on TV. It sure beat fighting the crowds home on the subway! Earlier in the week I had cooked up some red beans and rice and then ate up the leftovers for lunch – this was definitely a dish that tasted better the second time around.

I’ve never been to Louisiana, but I’d really like to visit and just eat a lot of food. I love creole and cajun cuisine; the dishes are spicy (and still served with a side of hot sauce) and taste a lot like home, usually because they’v been cooking all day.

This is not your traditional Louisiana red beans and rice. I used the same ingredients (for the most part) but made this dinner in less than an hour. It wasn’t made with a ham bone and I substituted Polish kielbasa for Andouille sausage. By using canned instead of dried beans, you can really cut out a lot of the time. Another change I made was dicing the vegetables, but not overly small; when the dish is ready the veggies are still present and haven’t melted away as in the traditional dish.

What you end up with is some New Orleans flavor made in a New York minute – enjoy!

Red Beans & Rice

  • 1 pound kielbasa sausage, cut into 1/4″ slices
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 stalks celery, sliced thin
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 4 garlic cloves, grated
  • 2 15 oz cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups white rice, cooked

Brown the kielbasa in some oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven, about 5-7 minutes.

When the meat is browned, set aside and keep warm. Toss the onion, pepper, and celery into the pot with some salt and pepper and soften the vegetables. Soften, but don’t brown, the vegetables over low-medium heat for 10-12 minutes. Toss in the garlic and stir until fragrant.

Add the beans, stock and spices to the pot and bring it to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes so that the flavors start to come together. Return the sausage to the pot, remove the bay leaves and serve over rice.


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