My husband absolutely loves paella and rice based dishes in general and as it happens jambalaya is something I myself have wanted to try for many years but just never got around to doing so what better time like now? Jambalaya was historically an attempt to recreate paella in the city of New Orleans where the spice saffron was not easily available and as a result traditional paella was not possible. This led to a variety of attempts to create a cheaper more readily available variation on the tradition Spanish dish.
Jambalaya is paellas’ younger sister, dressed up in a different clothes and in many ways they are the same but importantly with enough differences to make them two individual dishes. Both are spicy rice dishes with paprika spices, vegetables and traditionally meats of sausage and chicken, of course I will be and you can also keep it vegan with the now many options on the market.
I was so happy with the result and my husband assures me it was indistinguishable from the real dish, and while this does require a good quality sausage and chicken replacement the dish as a whole was very warming and satisfying, something that during the winter in the UK I can promise is very comforting to have. The real benefit of this dish though is that it suits any season, being a dish traditionally eaten in warmer climates it works as a summer dish as much as it compliments sitting in doors, all cosy and toasty during the colder months.
700 ml Water
320 gr Long Grain Rice
200 gr Mock Chicken Pieces (I used Iceland’s No-Chick Strips)
4 Chorizo Style Sausages (I used Sainsbury’s Chorizo Shroomdogs)
400 gr Chopped Tomatoes (1 can)
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Green Bell Pepper
3 tbsp Olive Oil
2 tbsp Vegan Worcester Sauce
2 tbsp Vegetable Stock Powder
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Smoked Paprika
1/2 tsp Chilli Flakes
1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
Spring Onion (to garnish)
Fresh Parsley (to garnish)
In a pan roast “chicken” and sliced chorizo “sausages” in 1 tbsp of olive oil until caramelised. Set aside.
Add the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil, chopped onions and peppers to the same pan.
Stir fry for 5-7 minutes. Add all the spices and let them infuse the veggies for a couple of minutes, then add Worcester sauce, chopped tomatoes, rice and roasted “chicken and chorizo”.
Cover with boling water, add the stock and simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occationally.
Season with extra spices, salt and pepper, garnish with freshly chopped parsley and spring onion and serve immediately.