It’s 38 degrees in Melbourne, I am pretty sure I don’t have any lips anymore, they melted off about an hour ago. I have been hallucinating a mirage in my living room and I’m so hot, the Sun is currently putting on SPF 50 to protect itself from me.
Sounds like a perfect time to make a stodgy, spicy, sausage rice dish right? Or is that my heat insanity talking? Whatever it is, today I am making vegan jambalaya!
Jambalayas origins are from Louisiana, where all my favourite food seems to come from, and if I am correct, it nearly always consists of a spicy sausage paired with another meat/fish, such as pork, chicken or shrimp. I am forgoing the second meat and for the sausage, I am using a Smoked Field Roast Apple Sage Sausage, 100% vegan and an excellent alternative if you ever want sausage and/or smoke to a dish. The main difference with these sausages, or any wheat gluten based sausage, is slow cooking will kill the texture, so don’t treat it like a normal sausage. Cook them up first and then remove and add right at the end of cooking everything else. Any vegan sausage will work though, it just won’t be the same if it isn’t spicy or smoked. A good soyrizo might work.
The veg is the classic combination of celery, pepper and onion. I won’t mess with that. I did however use one yellow pepper and one green pepper, instead of the standard green ones only. I am also using fresh tomatoes instead of tinned (not that tinned is the norm for jambalaya), this is a big recommendation from me. Tinned tomatoes save time and will get the job done, but it just won’t be the same.
The other major difference is I have opted for a healthier brown rice over the standard white rice. Hey, it’s 38 degrees and I am training for a triathlon. I’m not thinking straight!
Man it’s hot. Enjoy this, it was one of my favourites as a meat eater and when making it like this, I don’t miss the meat AT ALL.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 Field Roast Apple Sage Sausages (or any vegan sausage that serves 4)
- 1 brown onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 peppers (capsicum) – I used 1 yellow and 1 green, diced
- 1 red chilli, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 4 fresh tomatoes, cored and chopped
- 1-2 tablespoons vegan worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon thyme
- 2 cups brown rice, rinsed
- 4 cups (1 litre) chicken style stock (or vegetable stock if you can’t find a vegan chicken stock)
- 2 bay leaves
- Small bunch coriander, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- Heat a large casserole dish/saute pan over a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of the oil
- Cook the sausages whole, I find about 2 minutes, flip it, then repeat until all 4 sides are cooked is perfect
- Remove from heat, chop into bite size pieces and add remaining oil back to pan, reduce heat to medium/low
- Add the onion, peppers and celery. Fry for about 10 minutes, stirring regularly
- Add the garlic and chilli and fry for 2 minutes
- Add the rice, smoked paprika and thyme and stir to make sure everything is covered
- Deglaze the bottom of the pan using the Worcestershire sauce
- Add the tomatoes and stir
- Add the chicken style stock and bay leaves, stir and turn up the heat. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for around 40 – 45 minutes, stirring regularly. The rice will absorb all the liquid and should cook perfectly. Test a bit of rice, if it is still a bit firm, add some more water and continue to cook for a few minutes, testing regularly
- Add the cooked sausage and stir. Leave to heat for a couple of minutes
- Remove the bay leaves, add the coriander, season with salt and pepper and you’re ready to serve
- Get it into ya!!!!
I have been on a major 70s rock kick recently. I needed something a bit more chilled and remembered this album. It had a big effect on little Juddy. Guru is one of the legends of the hip hop world and is from a group called ‘Gang Starr’. This album is from a collection of solo albums he made (this one being my favourite of the three by far) where he collaborated with some of the best jazz musicians of the time, from London to LA. The result is a chilled jazz/hip hop album that although has no connection to Louisiana that I am aware of, the jazziness and laid backness of it, will go well with cooking this. Great stuff, check it out….
Listen – but do yourself a favour and buy it on vinyl!!