Three Perfect Lazy-Days-of-Summer Dishes

Lobster Jambalaya by Laura Kurella

Three Perfect Lazy-Days-of-Summer Dishes

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4 people

Captivate your crowd with a colorful cuisine that’s easy to cook!

Part of living the good life is kicking back and relaxing with family and friends and one dish that makes it super easy to celebrate a lazy day this summer is Jambalaya!

Pronounced “jahm-buh-LIE-uh,” this dish is believed to have originated in southern Louisiana by the Cajuns around the bayou area where food was scarce. The word is said to be a compound word of Jambon, from the French meaning ham, and Aya, meaning rice in African. Since there were many slaves in Louisiana at the time, it makes perfect sense.

A Little Jambalaya History

In The Dictionary of American Food and Drink, John Mariani offers a more colorful origin of the name: “A gentleman stopped by a New Orleans Inn late one night to find nothing left for him to dine upon. The owner thereupon told the cook, whose name was Jean, to ‘mix some things together’ –balayez, in the dialect of Louisiana — so the grateful guest pronounced the dish of odds-and-ends wonderful and named it ‘Jean Balayez.’”

The first printed reference appeared in a 1900 cookbook, The Picayune’s Creole Cook Book, which calls the dish “Spanish-Creole.” Considered simple to prepare because it is a one-pot dish, Jambalaya is comprised of a rich stock that is created from vegetables and meat you toss in, and then raw rice is added to absorb the flavor as it cooks in.

Easy On The Palate And The Pocketbook

An ideal dish to cook for a crowd, Jambalaya is economical too, and the best part about it is it has a recipe that can bend to your taste preferences and or your pocketbook too! Made using your choice of meats, fish or seafood – beef, pork, chicken, duck, shrimp, lobster, oysters, crayfish, sausage or any combination thereof – you get to decide what your own jambalaya will taste like, and also if you want to make some for just yourself or a crowd!

Here are three suggestions, below, to help you have a lazy day this summer:

  • Lobster Jambalaya
    • Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
    • Cook Time: 1.1 hour
  • Crock Pot Cajun Caviar
    • Prep Time: 15 minutes
    • Cook Time: 4-8 hours
  • Dutch Oven Chicken Jambalaya
    • Prep Time: 15 minutes
    • Cook Time: 55 mintues


Lobster Jambalaya Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. smoked sausage, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1/4 cup bacon fat, or butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch scallions, tops and bottoms, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 2 cups jasmine or basmati rice, uncooked
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 lb. lobster meat, cut into pieces

Crock Pot Cajun Caviar Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes, diced, undrained
  • 2 cups smoked sausage, fully cooked, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon parsley flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper sauce
  • 3/4 lb. medium shrimp, raw, peeled, deveined
  • 5 lbs. crawfish, thawed

Dutch Oven Chicken Jambalaya Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 lb. andouille sausages, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1 1/2 cups long grain rice
  • 1 (14-ounce) can tomatoes, chopped with juice
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped


Lobster Jambalaya:

  • 1 Stir-fry sliced sausage in bacon drippings in large, heavy kettle over moderately high heat for 5 minutes. Remove to bowl with slotted spoon.
  • 2 Whisk in flour and cook 2-3 minutes to make a rich, brown roux. Add onion and garlic and stir-fry for 10 minutes until golden brown. Add sausage, scallions and chopped pepper along with spices and uncooked rice. Stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  • 3 Add stock, bring to a boil, and then reduce heat and cover. Cook until rice is soft, about 30 minutes. Uncover, add lobster and stir well. Heat for 10 minutes until rice dries out and lobster is heated through.

Crock Pot Cajun Caviar:

  • 1 Mix all ingredients except shrimp and crawdads in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low setting for 7 to 8 hours (or high setting for 3 to 4 hours), or until vegetables are tender.
  • 2 Stir in thawed crawdads and shrimp. Cover and cook on low setting for 1 hour or until shrimp are pink and firm.
  • 3 Serve with rice, if desired.

Dutch Oven Chicken Jambalaya:

  • 1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large pan or Dutch oven, brown chicken in hot oil on both sides; remove and drain.
  • 2 Add andouille, onion, celery, bell pepper, thyme, oregano, paprika, salt, and cayenne pepper to the pan, cooking and stirring for about 5 minutes until onions are tender.
  • 3 Add rice, tomatoes with juice, and broth; bring to a boil. Place rice mixture in a baking dish or ovenproof casserole, top with chicken, cover and bake for 40-45 minutes or until rice and chicken are done and tender.
  • 4 Stir in parsley and green onions, cover and cook 5-8 minutes longer.


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