Monday, November 05, 2012

Jambalaya - Vegan Style!

   Hi Friends!

   It's Monday morning - are you ready for the week ahead?  I sure am.  It's been a really strange weekend (er, past week) and I'm looking forward to the "fresh start" that a new week brings.  Plus, it was Daylight Savings this weekend which means winter is on it's way.  Fresh start, new season... I'm liking the way this is going.

   Speaking of winter...  here is a Jambalaya recipe to warm you up on those cold nights.

   Before I got started in the kitchen, I searched for inspiration on the interweb, since I've never made Jambalaya before.  It turns out this is a really popular dish to make on Fat Tuesday.  Who knew?  I really liked how it turned out but I've already made notes about how to make it even better.  I will definitely be making this again in the winter (or perhaps for a Mardi Gras party?) and when I do, I'll share my modifications with you guys.

Vegan Jambalaya
8 servings
1 onion
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 peppers (I used one red, one yellow)
1 cup celery
4 vegan sausages (I used Tofurkey Polish style sausage)
1 cup vegan chicken style pieces (I used Blue Menu)
2 cups short grain brown rice, rinse and soaked
1 1/2 cup frozen organic peas
1 1/2 cup organic sweet corn (canned, fresh or frozen)
1-28 oz canned tomatoes, whole or chopped
1 can diced green chiles
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chili flakes
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp pure maple syrup or a pinch of sugar
+ 1 cup water
Tabasco sauce (as much as you like)
large handful of freshly chopped flat leaf parsley
coconut oil
salt and pepper

1.  Rinse and soak your rice (I used the black rice from my pen pal package)
2. Add a small amount of oil to a large skillet and place over medium heat.
A co-worker told me about this so I thought I would give it a try in this dish.
3. Cook the vegan chicken a few minutes per side until cooked through.  Set aside.
It's crazy how much it looks like chicken!

The taste and texture was better than other "chicken" strips that I've tried.
4.  In the same pan add sausages and cook until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.  Set aside.

5.  In a large soup pot, heat some oil over medium heat and add the onion.  Cook until soft, a few minutes, and then add the minced garlic.  Mix in your seasonings.

6.  Add the chicken and sausages and cook for a few minutes.

7.  Next add the peppers and celery and cook until they soften, about 7 minutes.  Toss in the green chiles.

8.  Stir in the rice and then add the tomatoes with the juice, pure maple syrup, one cup of water, and as many shakes of Tabasco as you'd like.
Check out the soak water from the rice!

9.  Gently simmer for about 45 minutes or until rice is cooked.
10.  Add your peas and corn within the last few minutes of cooking time and cook until warmed through.  Stir in about half of the parsley.
11.  Serve in bowls and garnish with the rest of the parsley.

   I'm really happy with how this dish turned out although, I did notice that because of the black rice everything took on a reddish color.  I enjoyed the flavor of the rice but next time, for presentation purposes, I wouldn't use it in this recipe.

   I hope you all have a great start to your week!

Ves xx

Ps: I'm not a huge fan of using "mock meats" but once in a while is okay and I had fun using them in this recipe.

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