Sunday, July 8, 2012
This quinoa jambalaya was somewhat of a throw-together I made a couple of months ago (I'm REALLY behind, I know!!) but the boys LOVED it. It made so much we ate it as leftovers for a couple of days (this was back in the glorious days of being able to send my husband with leftovers because he was working in one spot) and I even froze an individual container as well. Using quinoa in place of rice makes it a protein-packed Cajun-ish pot of delicious. That's right.
2 c quinoa
4 c chicken broth (I use "Better Than Bouillon" or Knorrs if I don't have leftover homemade on hand)
1 t minced garlic (or more if you'd like)
1 1/2 t cumin
1 length of sausage, sliced (we had kielbasa on hand, but Andouille would be delicious too...or linguica)
4 boneless skinless chicken thighs or 2 breasts, chopped
1 sm/med onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
28ish oz canned diced tomatoes (a big can is 28 oz, two small equal 29 oz. Use what you have!)
2 T olive oil
2-3 t minced garlic
2 T Cajun spice
salt to taste if your Cajun isn't salty (mine is not salty--it's from my favorite website: www.mountainroseherbs.com)
Now, you'll want to make the quinoa in a separate pot. Quinoa cooks similarly to rice, where you bring your liquid to a boil, add the quinoa, reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and cook it for about 20 minutes. Then if you have liquid leftover you drain it out. This made enough quinoa that I actually kept a little aside for another meal, so I guess you could get away with making 1 1/2 c of quinoa if you didn't want leftovers, but now it's up to you to rearrange proportions.
While the quinoa is cooking, in a heavy-bottom pot or dutch oven on medium, heat oil, then add the onions, pepper, and celery. When they're turning translucent, add the garlic (if you add it early it cooks out a lot of the flavor...I read that somewhere so it must be true). Then add the chicken and saute until the chicken is cooked through (no pink!). Once the chicken is cooked, add the sausage and let that heat through...since it's precooked it doesn't take long. Then add your tomatoes and Cajun spice. At this point, your pot should look like the picture above, near the ingredients.
Let the meat/veggie mix simmer until your quinoa is done cooking. If your quinoa is already done, give your mix a few minutes anyway to blend the flavors some. Taste it! See if you need salt like I did.
When you're satisfied with your pot of sausage, chicken, and veggies, add in the quinoa and stir to combine. Now eat it! If you want to be fancy, you could put some fresh parsley on each serving. I'm not fancy, however. You may want to pepper it, or taste to see if you want hot sauce. We add hot sauce to almost everything...it's a wonder we can taste our food still!