Sunday, January 27, 2008

Crockpot Challenge* - Jambalaya!

Crockpot Challenge: Jambalaya


1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 pound andouille sausage, diced (I chose to slice instead of dice)
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup white wine
1 tsp chopped garlic
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons Cajun or Creole seasoning
1 teaspoon hot sauce
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 pound cooked shrimp
2 cups cooked rice

- Combine chicken, sausage, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, chicken broth and white wine.
- Stir in oregano, Cajun seasoning, hot sauce, bay leaves, thyme and garlic.
- Cover, and cook on LOW for 7 hours or on HIGH for 3 hours.
- 30 to 45 minutes prior to serving, stir in the shrimp.
- Discard bay leaves.
- Spoon mixture over cooked rice- or stir in the cooked rice 15 minutes prior to serving so the flavor is absorbed.

Dinner for Two


I've got to tell you, I was freaking out with this one. I just could not believe that I wasn't supposed to cook the chicken, but someone told me that was the norm (thanks, for that!). I probably wasn't supposed to cook the sausage either, but I just didn't see how I could possibly slice the links otherwise. I actually combined two recipes to make this and then added my own touches - like the wine (I don't know why I always feel the need to add alcohol) and the garlic. Both recipes said to use frozen, cooked shrimp but I didn't see why I shouldn't just buy it fresh from the case. One recipe said to spoon the Jambalaya over the rice, the other said to mix the rice in. Mine had so much liquid I was sure it was going to be horrible. I've had some awesome Jambalaya and this just wasn't turning out like I'd wanted. I threatened to throw it out and have us eat something else, but Daniel insisted we try it. Nothing like insecurity in the kitchen! Lucky for me I have a brave husband who is willing to taste test just about anything (except green beans, he's just not a fan).

Anyway. He loved it (had seconds) and I was pleasantly surprised. It's hearty and spicy (but I added even more hot sauce to mine) and perfect for this weird weather we've been having. Next time I think I'll go with my gut and not cut the chicken - the long cook time resulted in the chicken shredding and becoming practically invisible. I like bulk to my chicken! Otherwise, I'd totally do this again. This meal was 9 points.

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