Monday, February 8, 2010

Back in the Game

As you may have noticed, 2010 has not been a great year for the blog so far. Some of this is due to the craziness of the past two months, but it has also been because of some trouble I've been having with my apartment. I have been fighting tirelessly against an army of roaches that have made their happy home this winter in my kitchen. I know, it is gross. But, I thought it was about time I blogged about it and got it off my chest. I was finally able to get the exterminator here last Thurs. and so far, things have been looking a lot better. I'm on the "rotation" for pest control in my building and so, hopefully, I will be able to sneak back into my kitchen and get cooking again.

With the two feet of snow we got this weekend, I hardly left my house. Thankfully, the roaches had retreated enough to allow me into the kitchen to try some goodies for the cold weather (and also for the Superbowl).

First was the Jambalaya:

Jambalaya (from epicurious)

What You Need:

- 1 tbsp olive oil
- large onion, chopped
- 2 medium cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 large green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 3 tbsp fresh Italian parsley, minced
- 4 oz extra-lean smoked ham, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 4 precooked sausage, cut into 1/2 inch slices
- 5 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, diced
- 1 large bay leaf
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
- 3/4 cup brown rice, uncooked
- 1 1/2 lb medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped into bite-sized pieces

What You Do:

1. Add oil to a large nonstick saucepan.
2. Over medium heat, sauté onion, garlic, bell pepper and celery until onion is translucent.
3. Add parsley, ham, chicken, sausage, bay leaf, and cayenne pepper.
4. Cook, stirring often, 5 to 6 minutes.
5. Add tomatoes (with juice), tomato sauce, and 1 3/4 cups cold water.
6. Gently simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
7. Pour rice into the pan and stir well.
8. Bring mixture to a boil.
9. Lower heat and simmer, covered, 45 minutes or until rice is cooked and absorbs most of the liquid.
10. Stir in shrimp and cook 5 minutes more.
11. Remove bay leaf.
12. Season to taste with cayenne pepper and salt.
13. Enjoy!

This is great for the cold weather... more weekend treats to come!

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