Thursday, August 6, 2009

Some South in Your Mouth—Red Beans and Rice

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I was in Memphis last week, researching for my Memphis barbeque series. Let me tell you, it was my kind of research. The weather was freakishly cool for late July/early August, the blues music called to me from every door on Beale Street, and barbeque was the signature dish for the city.

Ribs and pulled pork are the big draws, but I sampled a delicious red beans and rice that was to die for. You’re going to think I have an obsession with smoked sausage or kielbasa after the recipes I’ve submitted the last couple of weeks, but I promise it’s not so! Just coincidental.

This red beans and rice recipe is an homage to the dish I tasted in Memphis—the Louisiana-style Creole version is very different and would omit the tomatoes.

Red Beans and Rice

Red Beans and Rice3 15-16 oz. cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 14 1/2 oz. cans low-salt chicken broth
1 14 1/2 oz. can diced tomatoes in juice
1 pound fully cooked smoked beef sausage, diced
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cups white and wild rice blend (not the quick-cooking kind)
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup sliced drained jalapenos from jar, chopped
1/4 cup steak sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Dash of Tabasco 3 chopped garlic cloves

Mix all ingredients in heavy large pot. Bring to simmer over high heat.
Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until rice is tender, stirring
occasionally, about 35 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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Elizabeth Spann Craig—Pretty is as Pretty Dies—Released 8-1 (aka Riley Adams—Memphis Barbeque Series—May 2010)
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  1. Hmmm. Why is it, I wonder, after reading this blog, I’m always hungry? Dunno, but, it’s true. This dish sounds, great, Elizabeth.

    I’m hopeful your research trip went well with lots of photos…if that’s a technique you use…and you returned with a ton of notes and useable material. I can get sidetracked and end up gawking at everything but what I went to research.

    Best Regards, Galen
    Imagineering Fiction Blog

  2. Thanks, Galen!

    It did go well. Some family friends took me on an insider's tour of Memphis and I took lots of pictures.

  3. This not only looks good, it sounds delicious. And, the biggest plus, I think I could make this! I'm going to copy it.

    Straight From Hel

  4. I love this blog.

    And this recipe looks delish!!!! I'm copying it also. thanks!!

  5. Thanks so much, Helen and Kaye! Hope you enjoy it.


  6. Oh, I like the jalapenos in your recipe! Most recipes I've seen (up here in the Yankee north) add heat only with cayenne or Tobasco. The jalapenos are a really nice idea! Also smiling about your research trip. I just love that part of the writing process - discovering new things, new people, new stories - a step that never fails to inspire. Can't wait to read your Riley Adams' Memphis BBQ books!

    Cleo Coyle
    "Where coffee and crime are always brewing..."

  7. I love red beans and rice! I don't eat meat so I've tweaked the recipe a bit but it's good for both vegetarians and meat eaters alike! Bien provecho!

  8. Cleo--The jalapenos definitely add a little spice! :) Hope you like it.

    Thanks for popping by, Stylish1! Sure, this makes a good veggie dish with a couple of substitutions. Thanks.

  9. Its so important to be able to visit and research places that will be in your next book. Me, I had to use the Internet and Google Earth to research the Boston area for my past book. So have fun at the same time your performing your due dilligence.

    Stephen Tremp

  10. Sounds delish. And I really like the recipes where you "Mix all ingredients in heavy large pot." Easy cooking and easy clean-up.

  11. Stephen--That works well, too. I've looked at Google a lot the last few weeks.

    Alan--Yes, funnily enough, a lot of my recipes seem to feature one pot. :) Last week's Frogmore Stew was a one-pot meal, too. Not sure what that says about me...

  12. Yum! That sounds delicious. I can't stand it a minute longer, I'm off to the kitchen to find something to eat!