Feb 262011
 

The traditional Monday meal is Red Beans and Rice. Monday was wash day. Wives needed a dish that would cook long and slow. Red Beans is the perfect dish. Women would have use whatever meat was leftover from Sunday’s meal, usually pork. In New Orleans, Red Beans are traditionally served with sausage, either smoked or andouille. But lots of restaurants offer it with other things, like fried pork chops. Try it one Monday or whichever day you do laundry.

Red Beans & Rice
1 pound dried Red Beans, rinsed and sorted over
3 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
¼ Cup Chopped Tasso or Chopped Ham
1 ½ Cups Chopped Onions
¾ Cup Chopped Celery
½ Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
2 Bay Leaves
2 Tablespoons Chopped Fresh Parsley
1 Tablespoon Dried Thyme
11/2 Pounds Smoked Sausage, cut into 1” pieces
3 Tablespoons Chopped Garlic
10 cups Chicken Stock or Broth
4 cups Cooked White Rice
Place the beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with water by 2 inches. Let soak for at least 8 hours. Drain and set aside. In a large pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the tasso and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the onions and celery to the pot. Season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft, about 4 minutes. Add the bay leaves, parsley, thyme, and sausage, and cook, stirring, to brown the sausage, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minutes. Add the beans and stock, stir well, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender and start to thicken, about two hour. (Should the beans become too thick and dry, add more stock, about ¼ cup at a time. Remove from heat and with the back of a heavy spoon, mash about ¼ of the beans against the side of the pot. Continue to cook until the beans are tender and creamy, 15-20 minutes. Serve over rice, removing the bay leaves.

Enjoy!