Recipe: Red Beans & Rice

I know I have done a “beans and rice” post before, but that was a blander dish than this one. This one is as “authentic” as a non-Louisianan can get with red beans and rice.  My friend brought me dry red beans and rice from New Orleans when they went to visit and I was so excited to make this recipe that I nearly fell from my chair!

Red Beans and Rice

1 lb dry kidney beans, cooked
2 cups cooked rice
1 tbsp McCormick’s All Purpose Cajun seasoning
1/2 onion, diced
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 green bell pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1 link Johnsonville smoked Turkey Sausage Link
1 tsp minced garlic

The first order of business is to cook the beans and rice separately from before you throw them together. I didn’t really follow the instructions on the beans and just went on the seasoned advice of my mother. This was the first time I ever cooked beans from dry and was a little apprehensive about the while process.

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I soaked the beans with minced garlic and salt for two days in a very large pot with a gallon of water. They will absorb a lot of the water, but that’s okay. When the second day is over, cook them on high until they are done to your liking. I think I cooked mine for about 45 minutes before I was satisfied. Toward the end of the bean cooking, I put rice in the rice cooker and let it do its thing.

Before I began to the next step, I turned off the beans. I chopped the celery, onions, and green peppers into the tiny bits. In a pot, put the olive oil and heat it up. Then saute the celery, onion, and pepper until the onion is caramelized. According to my mom, this was my grandfather’s go to combination for flavor that he put in nearly everything.

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While these are cooking, cut up the sausage length wise and then in bite size pieces. One it’s cut, dump it into the pot and cook for about two minutes, until it heated. Then add at least two cups of the beans and the entirety of the rice. (Yes, this makes a huge amount, but its a good freezer friendly meal!)

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At this point in the game, I added the remaining Cajun seasoning and a few more beans. Taste before you serve. If you want it to have more kick, add a little salt and Cajun seasoning.

There you have it! Red beans and rice with a kick. Enjoy it and leave comments below for any success (of failures) with your recipes.

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Happy Cooking!

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