Jambalaya is a quintessential New Orleans dish that has its roots in both French and Spanish settlers. Traditionally, jambalaya is made with some sort of sausage, along with some other meat and/or seafood. It includes the holy trinity of onion, celery, and green bell pepper, along with spicy seasonings and rice. Pasta Jambalaya replaces the rice with pasta to create an unforgettable meal!
I used Emeril’s Jambalaya Pasta with Penne, Chicken, Shrimp and Andouille on the foodnetwork.com site as a starting point. In addition, to the use of pasta in place of rice, Pasta Jambalaya is finished with heavy cream. All I can say is WOW – what a fantastic result!
The recipe calls for a lot of ingredients and a lot of chopping/dicing. I spent almost an hour preparing the “mise en place.” The shrimp took the longest! I started with around 1½ pounds of head-on shrimp to get to the recipe portion of 1 pound, shelled and deveined. For shrimp, I never know in recipes like this whether the weight is before of after the they have been shelled and deveined. I always assume, therefore that the weight is before. Anyway, I ended up with around 12 ounces of shrimp after they had been deheaded, shelled and deveined.
I used the following ingredients: Penne pasta, olive oil, shrimp, Emeril’s Essence, chicken, andouille sausage, onion, bell pepper, garlic, chicken stock, diced tomatoes, heavy cream, thyme, basil, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.
Making the Pasta Jambalaya:
I started the process by cooking the Penne in salted water for 10 minutes. I the pasta, but reserved a cup of the pasta liquid. Once the Penne was cooked,
I started the actual Jambalaya preparation. First, I tossed the shrimp with Essence and salt. Then, I cooked it in olive oil over medium-high heat in a large Dutch oven for 2 minutes. After the 2 minutes, I removed the shrimp from the pan.
Next, I added a bit more olive oil to the Dutch oven. I cooked the chicken, which I had tossed in Essence and salt, for 2 minutes. After two minutes, I removed the chicken from the pan.
Next, I added more olive oil to the Dutch oven, and cooked the sausage, onion, and bell pepper for 3 minutes. I thought that it was interesting that Emeril’s recipe didn’t call for celery to complete the “holy trinity”.
Then I added the garlic and cooked it for around 30 seconds until it was fragrant. Next, I added the chicken stock, diced tomatoes, thyme, basil, and remaining Essence. I cooked the mixture for 2 minutes.
Next, I added the cream and cooked the mixture for 2 more minutes.
Finally, I added the shrimp, chicken, pasta and some of the reserved pasta water to the sauce. I cooked this for around 3 minutes more. In the final step, I added freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and tossed to combine all ingredients.
I served the Pasta Jambalaya with a green salad, crusty french bread, and a chilled Chardonnay. Yum!