Yesterday was a stormy grey day and we had a ton of errands to run. Jake and I headed out to get his Chinese money exchanged to dollars and buy the things he needed to settle back into living in the US. We got caught in a couple of major downpours and came home soaking wet and freezing cold. After changing into dry clothes Jake needed a nap to help combat jet lag and I started making dinner.
Jambalaya is one of my favorite foods and this recipe is pretty simple. Its perfect with some french bread and a salad with ranch dressing and a sprinkle of cajun seasonings.
2 pounds of shrimp, cooked, peeled, deveined and tail removed ( the seafood counter at my grocery store has them, but they also have them frozen, either one works)
1 pound of smoked sausage chopped into bite size pieces. I like Zumos brand, but you can use any kielbasa or smoked link your grocery store has to offer.
1 large onion chopped
1 big poblano pepper deseeded and chopped
4 stalks of celery chopped
3 cups of okra chopped
3-4 roma tomatoes chopped
3 Tbs tomato paste
2 cups of uncooked rice ( I used brown rice)
4 cups of chicken broth
2 tsp cajun seasonings
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (use 1 tsp if you want it more spicy)
2 tsp paprika
2 Tbs hot sauce (I like Louisiana brand)
Cover the bottom of a large pot or dutch oven with olive oil and add the onion, poblano, celery and okra. Turn heat to med-high and stir to coat the oil on the vegetables. Cook until they are tender, but not brown. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste and the sausage, then add the rice and broth. Cover and turn heat down to med-low. Let it simmer for about 25-30 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Add in the shrimp, hot sauce and all the seasonings, stir to combine. Once it is heated all the way throughout serve with toasted french bread and a salad. Enjoy!
I did my grocery shopping yesterday and planned my menus for the entire week. While I was at the store I mentally went down my shopping list and was so proud of myself for getting everything I needed. I never seem to be able to make it to the grocery store with a written list, I leave them in the car, at home, in my pocket etc. I have tried to put the list on my phone and of course I forget its there. I am just not a list follower I guess.
Anyway, I came home, unloaded all the groceries and put them away and realized I forgot to buy the chicken for the Jerk Chicken sandwiches I was going to make. After debating going back to the grocery store I went the lazy route and switched my dinners around and made shrimp and broccoli risotto. It’s hard to top a warm and creamy risotto, its easy to make and super delicious. If you do not like shrimp, you can use cooked chicken in its place.
Shrimp and Broccoli Risotto
2 pounds of raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 12oz package of frozen broccoli
2 cups of Arborio rice
8 cups of chicken broth
1 white onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs Italian seasonings
1tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
1-1 1/2 cups fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Use a big pan (I used my wok) and cook the onion and garlic in the olive oil on medium-medium high until they are starting to turn translucent. Add the two cups of rice and stir well, let the rice cook for about a minute. Add about 1/2 of a cup of broth at a time stirring. Only add more broth once the other has been absorbed. Keep stirring and adding broth until you have about 2 cups left to add. Add the frozen broccoli and the shrimp and stir into another 1/2 cup of broth. Once all the broth is added and absorbed, stir in the Parmesan cheese and the seasonings. Cover and turn the heat off and let sit for about 5 minutes and serve.
This recipe is easy and it makes about 6 good size servings. Enjoy!