Food, Wine, Rock & Roll

Part food blog, part jam session

I love Cajun food and could eat it at least once a week for the rest of my life.  There’s just something about the heat in the spices of Cajun that I find comforting.  It’s perfect on a cold night or on a hot day with a cold beer.  For years I had used boxed or bagged mixed when I made red beans and rice.  I had found some brands that I really loved (Tony Chachere or Mahatma) and still use when time is a concern but was very excited when I found this recipe and could make it from home-made.  The first time I made this, I had some left-over red beans with pork bone that I had made a few days before and decided to use them instead of the canned red beans.  However, in later versions, I have used canned red beans and it is still delicious.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • Andouille sausage (chicken or pork; I have even used venison sausage)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2-3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Cajun seasoning
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (15 oz.) can red beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 4 c. hot cooked rice

Preparation

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

Add sausage and onion mix to pan.  Saute 4 minutes.

Add Cajun seasoning, salt, oregano, and garlic to the pan.  Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Partially mash the beans with a fork.  Add beans, 1/4 cup of water, and tomatoes to pan.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes or until thickened.

Remove from heat.  Stir in pepper.

Serve over hot cooked rice.

Drinks

This is another dish that doesn’t totally work with a wine.  The heartiness of the beans, sausage, and rice demand something a little bolder – something like a nice German beer.  As I’ve mentioned before, I love German beers; I have not yet come across one that I don’t like.  My favorite beer for this dish is a Bitburger Premium.  This is a brewing company that has been family owned and continuously brewing since 1817 so they have had a little bit of time to perfect this amazingly delicious brew.

Music

When making Cajun food, what could possibly be better to listen to than a band straight out of Louisiana?  Dirtfoot is self-described as “the only Front Porch, Whiskey Swillin, Foot Stomping, Gypsy, Punk, Country, Grumble, Boogie band in the land.”  Once you hear their totally unique sound, you will realize that this is the absolute best description for their rollicking, growling, eclectic, incredibly dance-able music.  My favorite album to throw on is their first album, Entertain Me.

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