Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Kinda Sorta Jambalaya

I'm sure a Southern native would laugh at my "jambalaya," but it's one of our favorite meals.  (Well, for my husband and I - the kids wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole.)  Unusually for me, it involves a box mix.  Of course, I can't just leave it alone - heaven forbid I strictly follow the directions on the box!  If you like spicy food, you can adjust this to your preferred heat level.  I make it pretty spicy.  It's a great one dish meal - protein, fiber, veggies, and carbs all in one shot.

Laurel's Kinda Sorta Jambalaya

1 8 oz. box of Zatarain's Jambalaya Mix (available in regular, mild, spicy and low sodium - I prefer the low sodium version, which is at their regular spice level, but I can't always find it; obviously you can add more cayenne if you want extra heat)
2 lbs. bulk poultry Italian sausage (I buy mine at Wegmans as patties, but links work just as well; I prefer their "hot" recipe)
4 cups water
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 16 oz. bag Wegmans Frozen Southern Blend (a mix of diced onions and sweet red pepper, black beans and black eyed peas - you could probably substitute one small diced onion, one small diced red pepper, one can black beans and one can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed)
1/2 cup uncooked rice (I prefer to use brown rice)

Brown the poultry Italian sausage in a large, deep skillet.  Add all of the other ingredients and stir to blend.  Bring to a rolling boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for an hour and 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  You can add a little more water if you like it soupier, or use less if you like it stickier. Serves 6-8.  (It goes down really well with iced tea, too!)

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