Get Down and Dirty with this New Recipe from Jorge

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 at 11:55 AM
Get Down and Dirty with this New Recipe from Jorge by Jorge A. Bustamante
Jordan Lander/ Erie Reader

A Hearty Dirty Rice

Growing up in Maryland I have had the joy of trying various types of southern-influenced dishes, and one of my old time favorites is “Dirty Rice.” Though Cajun cooking is considered a combination of French cuisine and the “dirty south” taste of spices, I have found that this is an adaptable recipe to any region.

There are many variations to the recipe, but the key ingredients are: rice, a ground meat (usually beef), beef liver, and chicken gizzards. Usually white rice is used to cook this dish, but like any recipe, there is always room to play. I have tried the dish with brown rice, which I will be using for this recipe, or even a pilaf-- the flavors changed but the experience has always been a great flavorful dish.

What I have done with this hearty rice dish is combine both a Dirty Rice and a jambalaya style with a few short cuts to help get all the traditional flavors of this Cajun dish with half the prep time. At the same time, I made it more of a healthier, family dish. By adding more vegetables and protein to this dish, I have made it more of a meal than a side dish. The aromatics of cooking come to life in the meirpoix – celery, carrots, and onions – when adding my personal touch of snow peas, corn, legumes, tomato, mushroom, and asparagus not only adds more color but also a heartier flavor.

The great part of this recipe is that it is a one-pot meal. So as we are going through our journey of our Hearty Dirty Rice.

 

INGREDIENTS

1 lb         Ground Turkey

 ½ lb       Italian Sausage (Sliced)

¼ cup      Olive Oil

1 cup       Meirpoix  (Finely Chopped celery, carrots, onions)

3 whole   Bay Leave

2 cup       Mushrooms (chopped)

1 cup       Vine Ripe Tomato

10 oz       Chunky Salsa (either mild or hot)

1 can       Black Beans

1 can       Pinto Beans

1 bunch   Asparagus (Chopped)

3 cup       Rice

4 cup       Chicken Stock

1 cup      Water

2 tbls      Chilli Powder

1 tbls      Crushed Red Peppers

1tbls       Paprika

1 tsp       Cumin

1tbls       Salt

½ tbls    Pepper

 

RECIPE

To start we are going to take two stalks of celery, ½ a white onion, and one peeled carrot; chop them up finely. Chop up the mushrooms and asparagus.

Then slice up the Italian sausage.

Let's start by heating up our oil in a sauce pot. Add our meirpoix and Bay Leaves.

Once the onions are starting to get translucent (that is the onions are starting to turn to a clear but not brown color) add the ground turkey and brown it. When your turkey is browned, add in the sausage. (The meat doesn't have to be completely cooked because it will continue to cook in the rice.)

As the meats become par cooked, add in our veggies and dry seasonings. Sauté our meats and vegetables with a medium-sized flame until we get a nice color. This is adding more flavors to both our veggies and meats.

Now we add in our rice and sauté the rice with all of our ingredients for about 3 minutes; add the chunky salsa and the beans we have rinsed and drained.

Now add in the chicken stock and water while bringing it to a soft boil. Once our water starts to boil, bring down the flame to a simmer.

Cover the rice with a lid tightly and let it simmer for about 25 minutes.

Turn off the flame, and let the rice rest closed for another 10 minutes without opening the lid.

Now just serve and enjoy. Buen provecho!

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