File_000 (1)Mardi Gras is tomorrow, but since I have rehearsal tomorrow, I figured I would celebrate tonight.  I’ve been eating a bit too much nasty junk food lately, so I was kind of aiming for somewhere between red beans and rice, and jambalaya.  This is packed full of veggies, and can be completely vegan.  And it’s super filling.  So, I’ll count this as a win. (by the way, this recipe makes SIX portions, so plan/adjust accordingly if you hate leftovers.)

The Goods:

1 large yellow onion (or vidalia, or spanish – even red, if you like)

1 large-ish green bell pepper

3-ish stalks of celery

minced garlic, 3 Tbsp or so

1 can (14.5 oz) petite diced tomatoes (I got the kind with jalapenos in it)

1 can (14.5 oz) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 bag (16 oz) frozen cut okra

rice (brown or white, whichever you like. long grain works better, but I only had short grain on hand)

vegetable or chicken stock/broth

your favorite hot sauce

salt and pepper, to taste

your favorite fat (bacon grease, olive oil, canola oil are all great contenders)

The method:

You’ll want a good sized soup pot/dutch oven/deep pan.  I used my nonstick wok because it’s easier to clean than my le creuset dutch oven. =)

Anyway, get that cranked on medium/medium high heat and add a glug or two of fat.

Dice up your trinity (onion, pepper, celery) and toss that into your pan.

Saute until it’s all softened and onions are translucent.

Add your garlic, cook until it smells AMAZING.

Add the tomatoes and beans, stir to combine.

Fill one of those empty cans with rice and dump that in.

Then fill that empty can TWICE with your broth. (or water, and add boullion to make broth)

Stir everything together, and simmer for 30 min or so until rice is cooked.  You’ll probably want to stir it once or twice to make sure nothing’s burning to the bottom, but it pretty well takes care of itself.

Once the rice is mostly cooked, stir in the okra.  You may want to add a bit more liquid if your rice is looking a little dry.

Heat through, add your seasonings to taste.

Dig in and enjoy!