Did you ever have the opportunity to do or experience something new and for some obscure reason decline? Well let me share one with you that to this day, I don’t understand why I didn’t jump on it sooner. A friend of mine, Vycki, invited me back when I was living in Windsor to join her and another girl to fly to New Orleans during Mardi Gras. I don’t remember why but I didn’t go and still regret it each time I see or hear something about New Orleans.
To ease my sorrow, I decided a few years later to make something Creole, something that is a New Orleans staple; jambalaya. Unfortunately I wasn’t totally making it from scratch and was buying the “prepared jambalaya rice mix”. C’mon that was way back then!
Since becoming better at making dishes without using “prepared” foods, today I am sharing with you my Chicken Ham Sausage Jambalaya. It is simple to make and also a good way to use up some of your leftovers. You can change your choice of proteins but the combination of these three is just fabulous. Try it, I’m sure you’ll love it!
- 1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes with herbs and spices (such as San Marzano), juice reserved
- 2 tbsp. olive oil, or more as needed
- 1 cup red onion, diced
- 1 large celery rib, diced
- 1 large red pepper, diced
- 2 large cloves garlic, pressed
- 3/4 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast (2 breasts), cubed (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1 cup cooked ham, cubed
- 1 cup sausage (such as andouille or garlic), thinly sliced and quartered
- 1 1/4 cups uncooked rice, such as Basmati
- 2 1/2 cups liquid (amount of reserved tomato juice + chicken broth) *SEE FOOTNOTE
- 1/2 tsp. hot paprika
- 1/2 tbsp. chili powder *SEE FOOTNOTE
- 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste if you want "hotter"
- 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp. thyme
- 1/2 tsp. dried basil
- 1/2 tsp. gumbo file
- 1 tsp. hot sauce, such as Cholula®
- 1/2 tsp. raw sugar (substitute brown sugar)
- 10-15 large pickled jalapeño peppers, quartered *SEE FOOTNOTE
FOOTNOTE: I usually get about 1 1/4 cups of tomato juice from the can and add another 1 1/4 of broth. As long as the total equals 2 1/2 cups of liquid.
- I usually put the largest measurement amount and work my way down the ingredient list. In this recipe, I'm all over the place...sorry about that!
- I put 15 jalapeño peppers in this recipe but if you want less or more heat, adjust accordingly.