Louisiana is one of the top three rice-producing states in America but that doesn’t stop us from loving pasta, too! In fact, so many Italian immigrants (nearly 300,000) came to New Orleans between 1884 and 1924 that the French Quarter was dubbed “Little Palermo.” In this jambalaya recipe, we substitute rice for penne pasta and make it even easier by starting with Blue Runner Jambalaya Base. Bon appetit! (Or should we say “buon appetito!”) Serves 6
Slice the smoked sausage into thin rounds, then cut any larger pieces in half. Add the sausage and vegetable oil to a large pot and cook over medium heat until the sausage is well browned (about 5 minutes).
Mince two cloves of garlic and add them to the pot. Sauté for one minute, or until the garlic is soft and fragrant. Add the onion, bell pepper, and celery and sauté until heated through (3-5 minutes).
Add the can of diced tomatoes (with juices), Creole seasoning, oregano, smoked paprika, thyme, freshly cracked pepper to taste, and pasta to the pot. Finally, add the can of Blue Runner Jambalaya Base. Using the 1 cup of water, put it in the Jambalaya Base can, swirl to get all the product out and add to the pot. Stir until everything is evenly combined.
Place a lid on the pot and turn the heat up to medium-high. Let the pot come to a boil. As soon as it reaches a boil, stir briefly, replace the lid, turn the heat down to low, and let the pot simmer for 10-12 minutes, or until the pasta is tender.
Stir the pot once every few minutes as it simmers to prevent the pasta from sticking. Replace the lid as quickly as possible to maintain a simmer. If the mixture still seems soupy at around 8 minutes, let the pot simmer without a lid for the last few minutes. A little bit of thick sauce at the bottom of the pot is perfect.
While the pasta is simmering, chop the parsley and slice the green onions.
Turn off the heat and stir in the half & half or cream. Stir in most of the chopped parsley and green onions, reserving some to sprinkle over top of each bowl. Serve hot.