Wider Horizons

With its radiant red colour and savoury smells, jambalaya is the perfect choice to dress up a dinnerCreole jambalaya table this autumn. Although its exact origin is unknown, the creation of this shrimp, chicken and sausage stew likely came about thanks to the multiple ethnicities mingling in the port city of New Orleans centuries ago. Jambalaya is similar to Spanish paella, which Spanish explorers brought to the new world. But paella requires saffron, which would not have been easy to come by in those early days, and so the settlers substituted tomatoes and created a delicious meal.

This recipe calls for Creole or Cajun seasoning, which can be found at a local grocery store or made at home. If you’d like to make your own seasoning, simply combine one part each of coarse salt, coarse ground black pepper, onion powder, cayenne pepper, dried oregano and dried thyme. Then add two parts each of paprika and garlic powder.

Students in Lethbridge College’s Culinary program prepare jambalaya, paella and other foods from all over the world as they learn to become professional cooks and chefs. To sample their finest efforts, book a table in the Garden Court Restaurant this fall by calling 403-382-6999. And to see a video of Lethbridge College chefs preparing this and other meals, go to widerhorizons.ca. Bon appetit!

And don’t forget to check out this video of a Lethbridge College chef and staff member preparing this recipe.
Ingredients
12 ......................... peeled and deveined shrimp (21 – 30 size/count)
1 cup (120 g)......................................................... chicken thigh meat
1 tablespoon (15mL)...................... Creole or Cajun seasoning blend
2 tablespoons (30 mL)...........................................................olive oil
¼ cup (65 mL).........................................................onion, large diced
¼ cup (65 mL)............................................ green pepper, large diced
¼ cup (65 mL)........................................................ celery, large diced
2 tablespoons (30 mL)..................................................minced garlic
1½ cups (150 g).....................................................Andouille sausage
½ cups (125 mL)................................. fresh tomato, course chopped
3 ......................................................................................... bay leaves
1 teaspoon (5mL).............................................Worcestershire sauce
¾ cup (200 mL)...................................................uncooked white rice
1½ cups (750 mL)...........................................................chicken stock
salt and pepper ...................................................................... to taste
Method

1. In a bowl, toss the raw shrimp and chicken with creole seasoning. This can be done a few hours ahead. Set aside.

2. In a Dutch oven or heavy gauge pot, heat the olive oil. Add the onion, celery and green pepper and sweat, cooking on low to medium heat so the vegetables cook but don’t brown. This can take about seven minutes.

3. Next, add the garlic and continue cooking over a low to medium heat for about two more minutes. Once again, you want the garlic to cook but not brown.

4. Add the shrimp, chicken and sausage, stirring thoroughly to ensure there are no large pieces of chicken stuck together. Stew for 10 to 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked, stirring often.

5. Add the tomatoes, bay leaves and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer.

6. Add the rice and stir. Then add chicken stock, cover with a lid and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes until the rice is tender. Serves four to six.

Wider Horizons
Chef Mark Dieser
Original Publication Date:
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