Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Crock Pot Jambalaya

When we went on our family vacation last March, my future sister-in-law made a Jambalaya for everyone.  Jason really liked it so I got her recipe and then (of course) made some changes to make it my own.  You can make this as spicy or as mild as you'd like.
Serves 4

1 lb chicken breasts (about 2 large)
6-8 oz andouille sausage
1 bell pepper
1 onion
4 celery stalks
28 oz diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tbsp Cajun seasoning
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño, diced
Hot sauce (optional)
1/2 lb shrimp
Rice, for serving

1.  Chop the chicken, sausage, bell pepper, celery and onion into large, bite size pieces and place into a crock pot.  Add in everything else except the shrimp and rice.  Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. 

2.  Twenty minutes before serving, stir in the shrimp.  Cook uncovered until shrimp is warmed through.  Serve over rice.  Enjoy!

Cajun Seasoning

This is a great seasoning or rub if you like it spicy!  I've only used this in my Jambalaya, but it would be a great rub for grilled or sautéed chicken or fish.

Cajun Seasoning
Makes 5 tablespoons
2 tsp Kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cayenne
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 1/2 tsp thyme
2 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1.  Combine all ingredients is a small dish or jar.  Mix or shake well.  Store in an air tight container.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Chickpea "Tuna" Salad

One of my favorite sandwiches growing up was Tuna Salad.  I still find myself craving it occasionally and, even though I do eat seafood every once in awhile, I just cannot bring myself to eat any type of fish that comes out of a can.....or a pouch :)  I personally like mine with onions and loads of celery, but add in whatever you like; pickles, relish, hard boiled eggs, etc.  I've also made a vegan* version before which was delicious!  Serve it on bread or in a wrap.  I like mine with lots of pickles and pepper jack cheese.

Chickpea "Tuna" Salad
4 servings

1 can no salt added chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4-1/2 cup mayonnaise*
1-2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp dried dill
3 ribs of celery, diced
1/2 small onion, diced
Salt and pepper to taste

1.  Place the chickpeas, mayo, mustard and seasonings in a food processor.  Blend until the mixture reaches desired consistency.  Transfer to a bowl, mix in the celery and onions and add more seasonings if needed.  Enjoy!

*To make this vegan omit the mayonnaise and replace with one ripe avocado.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Ravioli Soup

This is a delicious, filling, super easy soup that takes no time to throw together.  It's full of healthy veggies, but also has hearty ravioli (tortellini works great too!) to fill your belly.  Use any type of ravioli you like.  The last time I made it I used one filled with asiago cheese and pesto.  Delicious!

Ravioli Soup
Serves 4

1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
26-28 oz chopped tomatoes
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tbsp dried basil
1 pkg (about 1 lb) fresh or frozen ravioli
2-3 cups fresh baby spinach (about 2 large handfuls)
Freshly grated parmesan

1.  Combine all ingredients except ravioli, spinach and parmesan into a large pot*.  Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Add in the ravioli and spinach and cook for an additional 10 minutes, uncovered, until the ravioli is warmed through.  Serve and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

*If you prefer your veggies softer, sauté them in a tablespoon of olive oil for 5-10 minutes before adding the broth and tomatoes.