Wednesday, November 2, 2011

New Orleans Red Beans & Rice

New Orleans, Louisiana
While I have never personally been to Louisiana, I am rather fond of a dish that was made famous there.

Of course, I'm rather fond of plates of food that were made in every state, but that's beside the point.

Red beans & rice became a staple when it was created to allow the womenfolk plenty of time to do the weekly laundry. Traditionally served on Mondays using the leftover ham/bones from Sunday's dinner, it remained popular even after the designated day of laundry became obsolete.

Personally, I think the demise of washday can be attributed to feminism, the washing machine, and the knowledge that everyday can be washday. (I have a feeling that there are many southern men who now know how to run a washing machine...on Tuesdays...and Thursdays.)

This dish can be prepared in a slow cooker, on the stove, using dried kidney beans or canned, and ham can be substituted with Andouille sausage, or left out completely. Very versatile, comforting, and delicious.

Even without the laundry pile.☺

~New Orleans Red Beans & Rice~

~The Players~
2-1/2 cups dried red kidney beans
9 cups of water
3 (15 oz.) cans of kidney beans, undrained (no added water)
1 large bay leaf, torn in two
1 quart stewed tomatoes (or equivalent of)
3 Tb. tamari soy sauce (wheat-free)
1 large, sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/4 t. turmeric 
1/2 t. ground cumin
3/4 t. ground coriander
1Tb. unsalted butter
1 Tb. extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. Andouille sausage, rope sausage, diced ham, or leftover ham bones (remove before serving)
Cooked brown rice

If using dried beans, soak overnight. The next day, place beans in stockpot and add the water. Bring to boil; reduce heat, cover with lid and simmer until beans are tender.

If using canned beans, dump entire content of canned beans into pot.

In a separate frying pan, add butter and olive oil and heat. Add onions and celery and cook until onions are translucent. Add spices and continue to cook for an additional 2 minutes. This will bring out the flavor of the spices.

Into the stockpot, add stewed tomatoes, soy sauce, and bay leaf.

Ask your helper add the sliced sausage or diced ham. (Precooked only.)

Oops. It seems my helper needed to take a much-needed potty break.

Apparently it's in the contract.

Maddie is sitting on a stool just like the one I used to sit on at my Grandma's house.

When she returns, have her add the onion/spice mixture to the pot and stir well.

Allow to simmer for 2 hours or more; the longer the simmer time, the more flavorful it is.

Serve over rice.

If you like a little heat, add a couple of dashes of hot pepper sauce!


1 comment:

Candy C. said...

Mmmm...perfect recipe for the winter! Your helper is just too durn cute, love her smile! :)