It’s Monday in Louisiana and that means it time for Red beans and Rice . Today starts my Louisiana post as we get closer to Mardi Gras ( March 5th) . Let’s Party ! Lisa
The most popular legend goes like this: Ham was traditionally served at Sunday dinners in New Orleans. The leftover ham bone was still useful even after the meal — for flavoring — and could be used the following day as well.
Monday was traditionally laundry day. Cooking and doing laundry at the same time isn’t really feasible, so…. how about cooking that ham bone with some red beans?
Red Beans and Rice Recipe:
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or bacon drippings
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 1/2 cup chopped bell peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 pound boiled or baked ham cut, into 1/2-inch cubes
- 6 ounces smoked sausage, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices
- 1 pound dried red beans, rinsed and sorted through, soaked overnight and drained
- 3 tablespoons chopped garlic
- 8 to 10 cups water
- Cooked white rice
Heat the oil/drippings in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions, bell peppers, celery, salt, cayenne, black pepper and thyme for about 5 minutes. Add the bay leaves, ham and sausage and sauté for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the beans, garlic, and enough water to cover the contents in the pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally for about 2 hours. Add more water if the mixture becomes dry and thick. Mash about half of the mixture against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon to add thickness. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 1 1/2 hours. The mixture should be creamy and the beans soft. Add more water if it becomes too thick. The finished product should be soupy, not watery. Remove the bay leaves and serve over cooked white rice.
Slow Cooker :
In a slow cooker, combine the soaked and drained beans, andouille, celery, ham shank, onions, bell peppers, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne, onion powder, paprika, brown sugar and 2 teaspoons salt. Add the chicken stock and 2 cups water and stir to mix. Cook on the high setting until the beans are tender, 6 to 8 hours.