Cajun Jambalaya


2 whole bay leaves
2 teaspoons ground red pepper (preferably cayenne)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons white pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 pound chopped tasso or other smoked ham (preferably cured)
3/4 pound boneless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup chopped onions, in all
1 cup chopped celery, in all
1 cup chopped green bell peppers, in all
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup canned tomato sauce
1 cup peeled and chopped tomatoes
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups uncooked rice (preferably converted)


  1. Combine the seasoning mix ingredients in small bowl and set aside: bay leaves, red pepper, salt, white pepper, thyme leaves, black pepper, rubbed sage.
  2. Melt the butter in a 2-quart saucepan over high heat.
  3. Add the tasso and cook until meat starts to brown, about 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Add chicken and continue cooking until chicken is brown, about 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently and scraping pan bottom well.
  5. Stir in the seasoning mix and 1/2 cup each of the onions, celery, and bell peppers and the garlic.
  6. Cook until vegetables start to get tender, about 5 to 8 minutes, stirring fairly constantly and scraping pan bottom as needed.
  7. Stir in the tomato sauce and cook about 1 minute, stirring often. Stir in the remaining 1/2 cup each of the onions, celery, and bell peppers and the tomatoes.
  8. Remove from heat.
  9. Stir in the stock and rice, mixing well.
  10. Transfer mixture to an ungreased 8×8-inch baking pan.
  11. Bake uncovered in a 350° oven until rice is tender but still a bit crunchy, about 1 hour.
  12. Remove from oven.
  13. Stir well and remove bay leaves.
  14. Let sit 5 minutes before serving.
  15. To serve, mold rice in an 8-ounce cup and place on a plate face down. Remove the cup for a nice portion.

Recipe yields 4 servings. Recipe from Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen courtesy of Epicurious

If you don’t like spicy or want to make this family friendly, omit the white pepper and cayenne, and use only 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper.

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