Sep 3, 2013

Something Like a Jambalasta


Although my return to blogging didn't start off on the cheeriest of notes, let's see how long this revival lasts. Don't call it a comeback.

When I first started on my domestic journey, I was so scared to stray off the recipe path. I haven't graduated to wing-it-cum-laude yet but I'm getting better at replacing ingredients with what I have on hand. Below is a really versatile dish that was adapted from this one and it hasn't failed me yet. Here's what I used tonight but feel free to mix and match with what tickles your pickle palet.

1 lb. pasta
extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lb hot sausage, casing removed and diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large jalepeno pepper, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup beer
1 cup low sodium chicken stock
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
hot sauce
2 palmfuls fresh thyme leaves
3/4 lb chicken breast, diced
1 can of salmon (6 oz.)
fat free greek yogurt

  1. Cook pasta to al dente. I had some left over spiral macaroni noodles in the pantry but penne or even long pasta will be juuuust fine. Pasta is pasta is delicious.
  2. While noodles cook, coat the bottom of a deep skillet with oil and heat over med-hi heat. Add the sausage and brown for a few minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving behind all the glorious fat. I like to whisper, "I have big plans for you," into the pan to spice things up.
  3. Add garlic, peppers, and onions to the pan. Season with salt and pepper then saute for ~5 mins or until they slightly soften. You don't want to cook them too long or they'll turn to mush by the end of the cooking process. Also, only keep the seeds and membranes of the jalepeno if you like things extra spicy like myself. Otherwise, remove them before chopping up the peppers and it should still give a nice kick.
  4. Add flour to the pan, stir, then let the mixture cook for a couple minutes. 
  5. Whisk in the beer and let the alcohol cook out for a couple more minutes. Wine works too but I think the dish turns out a little yummier with beer.
  6. Add chicken stock, tomatoes, hot sauce, and thyme. You can use whatever hot sauce you desire but I stay loyal to my rooster with green top.
  7. Bring sauce to bubble and add chicken and salmon. Original recipe calls for shrimp but I always have canned salmon from Costco in stock so that's what I use.
  8. Cook until chicken is firm, ~7 minutes, unless salmonella is your thing.
  9. Add a splash of milk and a few spoonfuls of non fat greek yogurt. I chose this combo to substitute heavy cream b/c I'd much rather have ice cream after dinner.
  10. Add the pasta to the sauce and top with the crispy hot sausage.
I'd love to hear how it turned out for you (but only if it's good news).


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