My work decided to do a quarterly potluck to celebrate birthdays. This was decided at our Christmas party. At that same time it was also decided that two of the newest members of our team would host our 1st quarter shin-dig.
I was one of those two people. Yay!
We wanted to make a splash; make our party the one to be remembered.
To do that we needed a theme.
My partner in crime and myself wanted to make the main dishes. He made Jambalaya and I made Red Beans and Rice.
Oh my gosh! This was so good.
I had made this recipe once before. Also for a work thing. Hmm…I should try making it for myself some time. lol
It was a success both times. In fact the day after our party 3 of my co-workers requested I send them a copy of the recipe. Smiles. I was full of smiles that day. =)
Here is what you need to make this wonderful concoction of Red Beans of Rice. Normally I would use a full onion but I forgot to buy one and this was all I had. It worked out just fine.
First things first, you must sort through your beans.
Any bean that is open or not a bean at all, like maybe a rock, needs to be tossed. Like these, they need to go.
Like my new colander? I’ve wanted one like this for quite a while now. So, I finally broke down and got it.
Next up put the beans in your slow cooker.
Add 7 cups of water, 2 cups of chicken broth and your veggies – onion, green bell pepper, garlic and celery.
For the meat I use 2 pounds of smoked sausage. 1 lb is regular smoked sausage and 1 lb is 4-pepper smoked sausage. I love the heat this brings. I like spicy, so I don’t think it’s too much. I’ve even thought of adding in a jalapeno pepper. But since I’ve only made this for work events I didn’t want to make it too spicy. So I let the 4-pepper smoked sausage be enough.
I cook the meat, beans and veggies all at the same time. The blog where I found this recipe suggests boiling the meat first to rid of some of the oils. I might try this some time but don’t really see it to be an issue. So in it goes.
Something I do differently than Little Magnolia Kitchen, besides the spicy sausage, is I add ham hocks to the crock pock. I feel it adds extra depth of flavor.
Now add some black pepper and Creole seasoning. No need for salt. The Creole seasoning has enough salt in it.
Give a little stir and put the lid on. I let it cook on low all day while I’m at work.
I get to come home to oh such a great smell. Not much beats it.
I like to take an extra step at this point and switch over from the slow cooker to the stove top. For me it’s a little too watery and I prefer my beans a little thicker. I do the same with my ham and beans. Once on the stove I let it simmer/boil for roughly an hour.
Can you see how it’s thickened a little? The color becomes more rich too. I feel this is a crucial step but I realize it makes this a long process. So, up to you if you want to take it. After cooking in the slow cooker the beans are ready to go right then and there.
Here’s the recipe:
Red Beans and Rice
- 1 lb red beans
- 7 cups water
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 3 ribs celery, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 lb smoked sausage, sliced
- 1 lb 4-pepper smoked sausage, sliced
- 3 ham hocks
- 2 Tbsp Creole seasoning
- black pepper to taste
- Rinse and sort through the red beans. Pick out any rocks you might find and open or broken beans.
- Put beans in slow cooker along with water and chicken broth.
- Add everything else at this point – onion, green bell pepper, celery, garlic, smoked sausage, Creole seasoning and black pepper.
- Cover and cook on low for 10 hours. *You can probably cook for closer to 7 or 8 but I let mine cook while at work. So it’s more like 10 hours.
- Switch to stove top and let simmer/boil to thicken. At this point remove the ham hocks. You can let cool and pick off any meat to add to your red beans and rice or throw them all out. You won’t find much meat but there will be some.
- Once thick, serve over rice.
Make for your family, your next potluck or just for yourself. I promise you will not regret this recipe. =)