I’m writing this post with MUCH excitement. My taste buds are in a very happy place. 🙂
Since coming back from Chicago (aka the polar vortex), I’ve been craving nice warm bowls of hearty goodness. Even though it was over 80 degrees in LA today (sorry cold weather friends), I was still in the mood for some comfort food. While chilli is usually my go-to in these circumstances, I wanted to try something different to add a little jazz to my life. I was going through old recipes that I’ve collected and I came across one for a jambalaya and thought that this might be a good time to take a stab at it. After browsing recipes online and spending a couple of days collecting ingredients, I made the deliciousness that is cajun quinoa jambalaya. My rendition is adapted from this one from the Food Network, adding a healthier touch with the quinoa and chicken sausage but preserving the spirit. The flavors are absolutely amazing. If you’re in need of a little spice in your life, I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed. Enjoy. 🙂
For shrimp seasoning
- About 15 shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used frozen)
- 3/4 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp dried tyme
- 2 T olive oil
- 3/4 C celery, chopped
- 3/4 C green pepper, diced
- 1/2 C onion, diced
- 3 large cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 can diced tomatoes (I used fire roasted tomatoes wit green chiles for extra flavor and kick)
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tsp Worchestershire sauce
- 3/4 C quinoa (dry)
- 2 C low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 Andouille sausage links (you can also use regular Andouille if you eat/prefer pork)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Green onions to garnish
- Start by seasoning the shrimp (make sure it’s thawed if using frozen). Put shrimp along with all listed spices in a bowl and coat evenly using your hands. Sit to the side.
- Add olive oil to pot and heat on high. Add celery, green peppers, and onions to oil and stir. Let cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add garlic, diced tomatoes (with juices!), bay leaves and worchestershire sauce to pot.
- Stir everything together before adding in dry quinoa and 1 cup of chicken broth.
- Let cook for about 15 minutes until quinoa is cooked (becomes fluffier and soft). Keep watch on the pot and slowly add in remaining cup of broth. Final product should not be liquidy so make sure not to add too much.
- After about 15 minutes, add in andouille and seasoned shrimp. Stir and let cook for about another 10 minutes until broth is mostly absorbed.
I highly recommend making a nice big pot of this. The leftovers taste even better than the first round since the flavors have gotten even more time to sink it. It’s also great to throw in a bowl for an easy to-go lunch.
Let me know how it goes! Also, look our for something sweet later this week. 🙂