Subscribe via RSS Feed

Tag: "red beans and rice"

What Is Creole Cooking?

[ 0 ] November 27, 2008

Creole cooking is very similar to Cajun cooking in the fact that they both use ingredients such as bell peppers, onions and celery in their dishes. However, the Creole style of cooking differs in some ways due to its use of local ingredients and simple European flavors instead of wild game and the Acadian’s heavy French flavors.

The Creole style of cooking was found mostly in the homes of rich people whereas the Cajun style of cooking was found in the poor farming communities.

Creole dishes were also served in many courses on a beautifully set table instead of a single pot over an open flame, thus distinguishing it from the Cajun way of cooking.

The History of Creole Cooking

The history of the Creole’s cooking style actually began when European settlers arrived in the late 1600’s hoping to start a new life and acquire a large amount of wealth. Their European flavors mixed with the French, African, Caribbean, Italian and Spanish, which in return created what we know as Creole, or New Orleans style, cooking.

With the use of Italian and Spanish ingredients, Creole dishes took on a whole new flavor with an abundance of tomatoes.  The tomatoes were used in dishes such as jambalaya, and gumbo and often replaced the use of roux (flour and oil).

The use of beans became another important ingredient often found in Creole dishes. Its fame took on familiar dishes like red beans and rice, a New Orleans classic.

Okra and Creole Cooking

Okra was also an important ingredient.. It was first used by the African slaves, who shared their secrets of cooking by using the juice of the okra to thicken soups and stews like gumbo. Okra was also used in whole to give dishes like jambalaya and gumbo and added flavor.

Other ingredients included, rice, pork, oysters, shrimp, crab and crawfish, which were also found in other styles of Louisiana cooking.

To season the dishes, Creoles used garlic, parsley, bay leaf, salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper. And while the use of these seasonings was evident in their dishes, the results are actually far less spicy than most Louisiana dishes.
 
Today’s version of Creole cooking is actually very different than what had originated from the past. The flavors are mixed with the Cajun, which are only slightly different from one another. More often than not, it is hard to tell what is true Creole and what is not thanks to the commercial industry and the similarity in recipes.

However, if you are planning a trip to Louisiana any time in the near future, you can probably find a local who can show you the true way and taste of Creole style cooking.

Red Beans and Rice Recipe

[ 10 ] July 19, 2008

Red Beans and Rice Recipe

cajun red beans and rice

Red Beans and Rice

Red Beans and Rice is as Cajun as white on rice. It just don’t get more Cajun!

Red beans and rice was often a Thursday dish, because it was usually the day before payday (Friday) and folks were usually broke by then. Another train of thought has Monday being red beans and rice day as it was laundry day. In my opinion, any day is a great day for red beans and rice!

You can feed a big family a fine meal on a just couple of dollars with the Cajun classic red beans and rice recipe.

A bag of Camellia red beans, a ham hock or some sausage, and some rice and you’ve got a dinner fit for a king.

When it comes to Cajun cooking, red beans and rice is in the Top 5 all-time Cajun cuisine favorites.

.

Red Beans and Rice Ingredients

1 (16 ounce) package dry red kidney beans (We always use Camellia brand)
1 sweet Vidalia onion – chopped
1 green or red bell pepper – chopped *
2-3 stalks of celery – chopped small *
2 tablespoons fresh or dried parsley – chopped *
2 tablespoons minced garlic

( * Or, you can substitute a 16 oz bag of frozen seasoning blend.)

3 Bay leaves
1 tablespoon Cajun Seasoning (like Tony’s)
1 tablespoon olive oil or canola oil
2 links or 1/2 lb fresh Andouille sausage (or any sausage you like)
1 cup long grain white rice

 

Red Beans

Red Beans

How to Make Red Beans and Rice

Start your preparation the night before by soaking the dry red beans in a large glass bowl.

Cover the red beans with about 6 cups of water.

Cover and let stand overnight.

Ready to Cook –

Drain the red beans in a colander and place into the crock pot (slow cooker).

NOTE: If you don’t have a crock pot, you can cook the red beans in a stew pot on your stove top.

Cover again with about 6 cups of water.

Turn the heat setting on High.

In another skillet:

Heat the oil on medium heat (#6) and cook the sausage for 15 minutes.

Move to a paper towel to blot off excess oil, then slice into 1/2 inch pieces.

In the same skillet with the sausage drippings, saute the onion, bell pepper, celery, parsley, and garlic.

Stir and cook until onions are translucent – about 2-3 minutes.

Stir the seasoning mixture into the red beans.

Add the sliced sausage.

Add the Bay leaves and Cajun seasoning.

Stir well.

Be sure the mixture is at least covered with water, but leaving room for more liquid to form up from
the slow cooking process.

Cook for 6 hours; only uncovering to stir occasionally.

Note: You will usually need to mash some of the beans to thicken your gravy.

Just mash them against the side of your pot with a spoon, then stir them in.

30 minutes before ready to eat, cook a batch of long grain white rice.

In a medium saucepan, add 2 cups water and bring to a boil.

Add 1 cup rice.

Cover and lower the heat to medium-low (#3).

Set your timer for 20 minutes.

Do not uncover until done.

Zatarains Rice

We always use Zatarains Rice

TIME TO EAT!

Give the Red Beans and Andouille sausage a good stir.

Serve over rice with a sprinkle of parsley for color.

Enjoy!

beryl stokes

Beryl Stokes

 

P.S. – If you have a question or comment about this recipe
(or any other recipe) please post your question or comment
in the “Comments” or “Leave a Reply” section below this
recipe.

P.S.S. – You can get these recipes emailed to you once
every two weeks by joining our FREE Cajun Recipe Club.

Simply enter your first name and email and click “submit”
on the form in the upper right hand corner of this page.