Red Beans & Rice

Cajun food is either loved or hated. If you can handle the spice, then it’s nice. If you don’t do spicy, you tend to stay away from this cuisine. Well, I’m here to tell you that you’re missing out if you don’t try some Cajun recipes. I tend to like a little spice but can’t take the hot, hot stuff. So, when I make Cajun dishes, I use less spice. Cajuns might say that’s not the true cuisine but I get to enjoy the delicious recipes without setting my mouth ablaze.

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A few notes about the ingredients: (1) I’ve done this recipe with andouille sausage (the norm) and was able to handle the spice just fine but this time around I was making it for a big group at church so I used a milder sausage.  (2) I used a 32 oz bag of beans and two packages of sausage because I was cooking for about 20 people. For the normal family, a 16 oz bag of beans and one pack of sausage should be fine. (3) This can be made with dry or canned beans. If you use dry beans, be sure to soak them in water overnight before adding to this recipe.

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Red Beans & Rice

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups andouille sausage, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 lb dried red beans
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 6 cups cooked rice
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
  • 1/4 cup scallions, sliced

Preparation:

  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the sausage and cook until golden, 5-7 minutes.
  3. Stir in the cumin and thyme; cook for 1 minute.
  4. Add the beans, salt, hot sauce, bay leaves, and enough water to cover the beans by 2 inches.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  6. Immediately reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
  7. Uncover and simmer until the beans are tender and the sauce has thickened, 30-45 minutes; add more water if necessary.
  8. Remove and discard the bay leaves.
  9. Serve over the rice, topped with scallions.

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