Friday, 7 September 2012

Recipe - Makeshift Jambalaya, Gumbo

Remember how I said I made jambalaya? The time has finally come to share the recipe. What exciting times we live in. Jambalaya and gumbo are very similar in concept (both stews with a variety of meats and shellfish, peppers, Cajun spices and fun names) so I thought I'd wait to make the gumbo before sharing my secret recipes. They're not really my secret recipes though. Well, I made them up myself but influencing factors included the fact that I was restricted ingredients-wise with jambalaya and had muslim(ish) sensibilities to cater to with the gumbo. They both tasted pretty good. So good that I burnt my tongue horribly on the gumbo. Of course, I underseasoned both. But I never give salt quantities anyway so that's fine!
Gumbo
4 chicken thighs
Vegetable oil
6 beef sausages, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, crushed
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
4 tbsp flour
3 bay leaves
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp chilli powder
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp Marmite, dissolved in 200ml hot water
1/4 of a bunch of supermarket parsley, coarsely chopped
175g okra
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 fresh tomatoes, chopped
4 spring onions, chopped
250g raw peeled prawns
A handful of parsley chopped for garnish

Season chicken thighs all over with salt and pepper.
Brown chicken thighs over a high heat in a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil.
Remove and set aside.
Brown sausage pieces, remove and set aside.
Turn the heat down to medium and add a couple more tablespoons of vegetable oil.
Add the onion, garlic, celery and pepper and fry for about 10 minutes until tender.
Remove and set aside.
Add the flour and whisk thoroughly until a deep brown colour, about 7 minutes.
Add the Marmite water into the pan slowly, whisking constantly so the mixture remains smooth.
Once smooth, add the bay leaves, parsley and spices.
Return the meat and vegetables to the pan.
Add the okra and tinned tomatoes.
Season with salt and pepper, cover, bring to the boil and simmer for about 40 minutes.
About 5 minutes from the end of the cooking time, add the fresh tomatoes, spring onions, prawns and remaining parsley.

Jambalaya
Vegetable oil
4 chicken thighs, seasoned all over with salt and pepper
1 chorizo cooking sausage, chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp chilli powder
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tbsp mixed herbs (inc. bay, thyme, sage, oregano, marjoram)
6 vine ripened tomatoes, chopped
250g easy cook rice
Enough chicken stock to cover and cook the rice
250g raw, peeled prawns
Handful of parsley, chopped

Brown the thighs and chorizo over a medium high heat remove from the pan.
Turn the heat down to medium and add the onion, garlic and peppers to the pan. Fry until tender.
Add the cumin, chilli powder, chilli flakes and mixed herbs and let cook for a minute.
Add the rice and coat with oil thoroughly for a minute.
Return the meat to the pan and mix thoroughly.
Add the tomatoes and stock to the pan and season with black pepper and a touch of salt if necessary.
Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes until the rice is cooked.
Stir in the prawns and parsley.

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