Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Cajun Style Dirty Rice

Just in time for Fat Tuesday! I've heard various reasons why this dish is named "dirty" rice. One theory is that the rice gets a dirty look when made the traditional way, using chicken gizzards. Another theory is that jazz was called "dirty" music, and that this rice is jazzed up. It's fun to sit around the kitchen table theorizing why someone came up with the name dirty rice, then trying to figure why you'd give it that name. Sometimes a little discussion is what makes food fun! Regardless, Fat Tuesday is a day that those getting ready to celebrate Mardi Gras want to eat well, and this recipe fills that bill!


1 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup chopped red and yellow peppers
1 tsp. minced garlic
2 Tbs. minced jalapeno
2 Tbs. flour
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 cup cooked brown rice or rice/quinoa blend
1/2 tsp ground pepper
2 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
2 green onions, sliced

Heat olive oil and butter in a nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion, celery, peppers, garlic, and jalapeno. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add the flour. Stir the flour and vegetable mixture for about 1 minute, until the flour begins to brown. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, stirring so that there are just a few clumps. Add the rice and pepper, stirring to combine. Add the parsley and green onions right before serving, or serve, and use the parsley and green onions as a garnish.

Serves 2, easily doubled

Stealthy Cooking Tip: Here's another recipe that has been jazzed up with vegetables. I've lightened this significantly, by browning the flour in the pan with the vegetables. Traditionally, this is made with a roux of equal parts oil and flour, cooked for a significant amount of time on the stovetop. I've also lightened this by omitting the chicken gizzards and sausage. Instead, I served this with a spicy chicken breast. It would also be good with any blackened fish or chicken. 

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