A while back I got a hankering for some good red beans and rice. I love the super creamy beans over some sticky rice. It is hard to come by. I also had made a few attempts before but could never get it right. I thought I would give it another go. I don’t usually repeat recipes that I make up, but this one is a keeper. I love this recipe. Its creamy and spicy and filling. So good.
Cajun Red Beans and Rice
- 2 links of andouille sausage links (I get mine from Whole Foods-they are chicken, but work well)
- 2-3 strips bacon, chopped small before cooking (its easier this way)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 green or red pepper, chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 30 oz (2 cans, drained) of cooked red kidney beans *See note
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 t oregano
- 1 t thyme
- 1/2 t cayenne pepper (more or less depending on your spice likes
- 1 t sea salt
- Cultured Butter
- Hot brown rice
Remove sausage from its casing and put in large pot (I like using my enamel cast iron dutch oven). Chop sausage up with a wooden spatula and add bacon pieces. Cook these until bacon is crisp over medium-high heat. Remove meat from pan. Leave the bacon/sausage fat in the pan (unless its an excessive amount-need about 2 T) and put in onions. Saute onions until they are starting to look translucent. Add garlic and peppers. Cook for a few more mins until the peppers soften up a bit. To this, add the rest of the ingredients, including the meat. Let this come to a simmer and turn down to med-low heat, then leave it simmering for a couple of hours until it starts to thicken up. I will leave the lid on for the first hour or so, then partially cover to let some steam out. When things are looking cooked, take a potato masher and mash the beans just a bit. We aren’t looking for a puree here, just a few smooshed beans. Let this simmer for a few more minutes and it will really start to thicken up. Be careful to not let it stick to the bottom of the pan! Just use your wooden spatula to scrape off anything that sticks. It shouldn’t be burnt because its a low temp. Hopefully! Once you are happy with the consistency turn burner off! It will stay hot for a while!!
Make your brown rice when things look like they are wrapping up. Brown Rice recipe below. Serve beans over the brown rice and add a pat of cultured butter on top (this DOES make a difference- it’s amazing). If you cannot get cultured butter, which I HIGHLY recommend, I would still use salted butter in its place. It makes it ridiculously creamy and decadent. The cultured butter tastes so good on its own (I would eat it plain…) and adds so much flavor. Yum. Ok, then I just sprinkle some parsley on top for pretty-ness. Ya know?
- 2 cups of brown rice
- 4 cups filtered water
- 2 T apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
In a glass jar or bowl mix rice, water and vinegar/lemon juice together the night before(or at least 8 hours) you want to cook rice. This method of rice preparation is wonderful for many reasons. One- because the soaking in acid environment helps break down some anti-nutrients (phytic acid) present in rice which can block mineral absorption.Two- it reduces the cooking time greatly! Win win! About 30 mins before you are ready for the rice put the rice with the liquid and a pat of butter, coconut oil or olive oil in a pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 25-30 mins. You can check it near the end to see if all water is absorbed. *Note: You MAY drain the soaking water if it bothers you- sometimes if it is really warm the liquid will smell kind of funny. If I let the rice soak for over 12 hours I usually drain the liquid into a measuring cup to see how much water is left. Add that exact same amount of fresh water and proceed with cooking. Do not add the full amount of water that you started with back as the rice absorbs water during the soaking process.
A note about the beans: Feel free to use canned kidney beans (but drain/rinse them first). I will make a huge batch of beans (dried) and then put 15oz in each freezer bag and freeze. 15 oz is the size of a normal can of beans, so anytime a recipe calls for a can of beans, I just grab a portioned bag out of the freezer and thaw it. Beans thaw really quickly. I usually have many types of beans available in the freezer. This is so cheap its not funny. But I have been known to use canned beans, so don’t fret if that is all you have. It will still be yummy.
Not the prettiest looking stuff, but boy is it good. Especially on day two!