1st &10 Black-Eyed Pea, Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya

Jambalaya has become the best known rice dish in America. The origin of this dish cannot be disputed. When the early Spanish settlers came to New Orleans, in the early 1700's, they brought with them the recipe for their famous paella. Since the ingredients for paella were not to be found in South Louisiana, their recipe was quickly adapted to the products at hand. Oysters and crawfish replaced clams and mussels in the recipe. Andouille took the place of ham and the new dish emerged from the paella pans of the Spanish. Since the main ingredient in the dish was rice, the dish was named "Jambon a la yaya." Yaya is the African word for rice and there is no argument that the "black hand in the pot" had a tremendous influence on our jambalaya. Today, the dish is made with many variations and with whatever is available. The most popular combination, however, is pork, chicken and andouille.


  • 1 (12-ounce) can black-eyed peas
  • 3 cups chicken, diced
  • 2 pounds heavy-smoked sausage, sliced
  • 1/2 cup bacon drippings
  • 2 cups onions, diced
  • 2 cups celery, diced
  • 1 cup bell peppers, diced
  • 1/2 cup garlic, minced
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
  • salt and cayenne pepper
  • Louisiana Gold Pepper Sauce
  • 5 cups Uncle Ben's Long Grain Rice, uncooked

In a 7-quart cast iron dutch oven, heat bacon drippings over medium-high heat. Add smoked sausage and cook until fat is rendered and sausage is browned, approximately 15 minutes. Do not burn bacon fat. Sauté diced chicken until dark brown on all sides and some pieces are sticking to the bottom of the pot, approximately 15 minutes. This is very important as the brown color of jambalaya is derived from the color of the meat. Tilt the pot to one side and ladle out all oil, except for one large cooking spoon. Add onions, celery, bell peppers and garlic. Continue cooking until all vegetables are well caramelized, however, be very careful as vegetables will tend to scorch since the pot is so hot. Add chicken stock, bring to a rolling boil and reduce heat to simmer. Cook all ingredients in stock approximately 15 minutes for flavors to develop. Add mushrooms, green onions, parsley and black eyed peas, including the liquid from the can. Season to taste using salt, pepper and Louisiana Gold. I suggest that you slightly over-season since the rice tends to require a little extra seasoning. Add rice, blending well into the seasoning mixture. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 30-45 minutes, stirring at 15 minute intervals. Do not uncover except to stir.

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