Friday, May 30, 2008

Welcome to the Church of the Holy Cabbage. Lettuce pray. ~ Author Unknown

I love cabbage. I love it in coleslaw. I love it in soups, especially Minnestrone. I love stuffed cabbage leaves. I love sweet and sour red cabbage. Most people don't think of serving it as side vegetable, but I love cabbage just sautéed with a little salt and pepper. So obviously when I come across a new recipe that incorporates cabbage, you get my attention.

A couple of weeks ago, I was wandering around the internet looking for some inspiration and I found this dish at Melissa's Magic in the Kitchen, which she adapted from Allrecipes.

Like Melissa, I made several changes to the recipe to make it more suited to my tastes. I went to one of my favorite cookbooks, Chef Paul Prudhomme's Louisiana Kitchen, to get the flavor I wanted and I incorporated the spices for Chef Paul's Red Beans and Rice into this recipe. The recipe below incorporates my changes.

This recipe is hearty, flavorful, simple to prepare and makes A LOT !! Tom and I each had seconds and we still vacuum sealed and froze enough for two more dinners.

Cabbage Jambalaya
by Terri Powers for Terri's Table

adapted from Melissa's Magic in the Kitchen

1 pound ground beef
1 pound kielbasa, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium head green cabbage, chopped
1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, drained well (I used diced tomatoes)
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1 teaspoon Emeril's Essence seasoning (or other Cajun-syle seasoning)
2 bay leaves
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
3 teaspoons pepper

To prepare this dish, use a large stock pot, dutch oven or other large pot with tight fitting lid.

Put the olive oil in the pot over medium high heat. Add the onion, celery and carrots and cook until the onion is slightly cooked. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more. Add the ground beef and cook until the beef is evenly brown, breaking it up into small pieces with the spoon as it cooks. Add the kielbasa slices, cabbage, tomatoes, chicken stock, rice and all the herbs and spices and stir well.

Bring contents to a boil and reduce the heat to low for a slow simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 35 to 40 minutes, or until rice is done. Adjust the seasoning if desired and serve.

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