Tuesday, March 8, 2011


When I realized it was Fat Tuesday and I needed to whip up a Louisiana favorite, I picked a lighter version of red beans and rice.

I really love those deep seeded flavors that you can only find in the south. This dish has a touch of sweetness, but if you're like me, you like to add a little heat. I serve it with hot pepper sauce, but you could top it with some hot pepper flakes too!
The colors in this dish are bright and cheerful just like a burst of springtime flowers. As tired as I was, chopping these veggies put a smile in my soul!

1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
3/4 lb smoked turkey kielbasa, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped, or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 dried bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 can (14.5 oz) stewed tomatoes
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
2 cans red kidney beans, drained, rinsed
1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
2 cups water
Hot pepper sauce

Check out how bright and beautiful this dish is! YUM! My youngest little girl asked, "Are we eating leaves for dinner??" when she saw the bay leaves!! In 4-quart saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add kielbasa, onions, bell peppers, celery, garlic, bay leaves and thyme; cook 4 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender.

I love this picture of the steam rising! Truth be told I kind of wanted to capture an image of Elvis or Michael Jackson. Seriously, wouldn't that be cool? Oh, well. Didn't happen this time.
Stir in tomatoes and salt. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in beans. Cover; simmer 10 minutes longer.

It will look a little somethin' like this!
Meanwhile, cook rice in water as directed on package. Remove bay leaves from bean mixture. Serve bean mixture over rice. Serve with hot pepper sauce.

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