So many of my recipes originate from, “I have a lot of XYZ left in the fridge. How can I use it before it goes bad?”. Such is the case with last night’s dinner. I had bought this beautiful head of purple cabbage, but forgot just how much cabbage a head renders. One head=ENDLESS cabbage. Said cabbage has been renting space in my refrigerator for about a week now, and it was time to attempt to use it up. I scanned google for ideas and found that cabbage is often added to jambalaya. I haven’t experimented with Cajun flavors much, so I was a little nervous, but this ended up being so good that it’s definitely blog worthy. The downside is I still have quite a bit of cabbage left over, so tomorrow’s post will likely be some cabbage infused dish as well. Hope you like cabbage. If not, I promise to post something completely unrelated to cabbage this weekend.
Alright, let’s get this Cajun party started.
Nutritionals: Gluten Free, Dairy Free
How to get the Cajun party in your mouth started:
1. Cook wild rice per instructions on the package. The wild rice I use takes about 45mins total to cook, so I like to get this started first. You don’t have to use wild rice if your taste buds can’t handle the texture. Not everyone likes wild rice. I get it. I use wild rice because it contains nutrients that you don’t get from your traditional white/brown rice. Here’s a decent article on this subject if it interests you. http://www.livestrong.com/article/367523-which-rice-is-healthiest-for-food-consumption/ If you want to use varying rice, brown rice is a great alternative.
2. Grease another pan and heat to medium. I like to use extra virgin coconut oil. It’s like a miracle oil. It’s packed with healthy fats and cooks really nicely with out leaving a coconut after taste. I highly recommend this oily delight. When your pan is all ready for some veggies, throw in the onions, peppers and celery. Let them cook for about 3 minutes and add the garlic, cabbage, bay leaves, tomatoes and jalapenos. If you don’t want a spicy dish, leave out the jalapenos.
3. Random side note: Do you see that little box of neatly chopped garlic in the picture above? It’s exactly what’s going to create my new love affair with garlic. I adore using fresh garlic in dishes. It gives the dish a pungent flavor that freeze dried or powdered garlic just can’t provide. Unfortunately, garlic is a huge pain in the ass to chop, so I’ve been gravitating towards the easier alternative. That is, until Josh and I strolled in to Williams Sonoma over the past weekend to find a handy little tool that chops the garlic in one foul swoop! Some girls get excited over shoes, I get excited about new cooking utensil discoveries. This little $20 purchase saved me some seriously awesome time, and as a bonus, my hands didn’t reek of garlic. Winning.
4. Alright, back to the task at hand. Cajun party in your mouth. So, we’ve added all the veggies to our pan. Let them cook until they start getting a pretty bright color. Add the sliced sausage. I used the jalapeno sausage that I found at Whole Foods. We try to eat as little meat as possible, but when we do, we eat the best meat we can possibly buy. This sausage is as “clean” as sausage can get. I know, the idea of sausage is awful and gross….but it sure does taste good every once in a while, and especially in these types of dishes. If you are feeling adventurous, you can add some wild caught shrimp or diced free range chicken to this dish as well.
5. Add your Creole seasoning, worcestershire, and hot sauce. The Creole seasoning is stolen from an Emeril Lagasse recipe I found. The dude makes some pretty amazing food, so I figured this would be a solid choice. Also, I used Cholula for the hot sauce, but you can use any variation you see fit. Stir well.
6. By now, your rice should be cooked. Add that to the veggie/sausage/delicious seasoning mixture. Stir this well, and let simmer for about 3 minutes.
7. Remove the bay leaves, serve, and revel in the delicious Cajun party in your mouth.
- ¼ cup chopped onions
- ¼ cup chopped celery
- ½ cup chopped green/yellow peppers
- 1½ cup chopped cabbage
- 1½ cup chopped tomatoes
- 2 Tablespoons chopped garlic
- 3 Bay leaves
- 1 Tablespoon chopped jalapeno (if desired)
- 1 cup (uncooked) wild rice
- 7 oz sliced jalapeno smoked sausage
- 1 Tablespoon Creole seasoning (see below)
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- Emeril’s ESSENCE Creole Seasoning:
- 2½ tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- Combine all ingredients thoroughly. (yields ⅔ cup)
- Cook wild rice per instructions on the package
- Grease another pan and heat to medium.
- When pan is warm, throw in the onions, peppers and celery. Let them cook for about 3 minutes and add the garlic, cabbage, bay leaves, tomatoes and jalapenos.
- Cook until vegetables take on bright color
- Add Creole seasoning, worcestershire, and hot sauce
- Add rice to vegetable and sausage mix, stir well
- Simmer for about 3 minutes
- Remove bay leaves and serve