Thursday, February 12, 2009

WHAT'S COOKIN' (Red Beans and Rice)


This is my husband favorite dish. Every Monday in New Orleans is "Red Beans and Rice day" and his mother would cook a big pot full, the addition of Smoke Sausage
originated in the southern section of Louisiana. The Red Beans are delicious with or without the smoke sausage.

1 pound Red Beans
1-2 pounds smoked neck bones
2 pounds of Andouille or Kielbasa Sausage
2 medium onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 ribs celery, chopped
3 large bay leaves
2 tablespoons chili power
1 to 1 ½ Tablespoons paprika
salt and black pepper to taste
4 cups of cooked rice
Soak beans overnight, or about 6 hours, in enough water to cover all beans, drain water, then cover with fresh water. Let beans remain in this water until ready to cook.
Clean smoked neck bones (there is a brain stem that runs down the neck of the pig), When the bones are chopped, the stern can be found in the channel-like opening, remove it.
Boil the bones on until they are ½ the way tender using enough water to cover, through the boiling period maintain this level of water.
Add the onions bell pepper, celery and minced garlic.
Add all seasonings except salt. Drain water from the beans add to pot and cover.
Cook at medium heat for 30 minutes, reduced heat to simmer and cook until the beans are tender. Be sure to check for seasoning and add salt.
Meanwhile slice the smoked sausage in 1" to 2" pieces. Place in baking pan in a 300 degree oven for 30 minutes, drain off and discard the fatty liquid.
Add sausage to the pot of beans and neck bones. Continue to cook until the beans are fully tender when pierced with a fork, skim off all visible fat.


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