Thursday, April 21, 2016

Skillet Gumbolaya

A cross between gumbo and jambalaya, this quick and easy skillet meal packs a burst of gumbo flavor, but without the usual lengthy time commitment - great for busy weeknights.
A cross between gumbo and jambalaya, this quick and easy skillet meal packs a burst of gumbo flavor, but without the usual lengthy time commitment - great for busy weeknights.

Skillet Gumbolaya

This is a great skillet meal that's a bit of a cross between gumbo and jambalaya. It's another one of those quickie dishes that I'm making while I work my way through getting whatever gardening and planting I want done before summer heat sets in.

Honestly though, I'm not quite sure which is worse... spring allergies or summer heat!

I got a high allergy alert on my Weather Channel app a little earlier, and just the thought of it made me cough! We've got a little rain moving in tonight and tomorrow, so I may get a break on the allergens and a little time to catch up on blogging and writing duties, speaking of which...

Just a quick reminder.... if you aren't interested in the chit chat, info, photos, tips and such on a blog, as always, you'll find the complete recipe text with measurements and instructions, as well as a printable document, a little bit further down the page. Just swipe or scroll down to the bottom of the post!
When I was a 30 and 40-something, I used to be the most organized person. I had my journals and planners, my calendars and my schedules, a place for everything and everything in place. I know some of you can relate to this.

As I've gotten older, things have shifted though, and I seem to have become possibly the most disorganized person in existence!

Maybe it's because my priorities have shifted from a corporate career to retirement, but I just can't seem to get my act together anymore, I guess because I don't have those pressing matters - determined by someone else - hanging over me.

Y'all would not believe the blogging opportunities I have turned down - spending time in Los Angeles to film a food-related game show, all sorts of TV competitions, and multiple opportunities to work with a wide variety of brands alongside other bloggers - mostly because it involved overnight travel.

At this point in my life, I'm a major nester, and I just really like being at home, relaxed and close with my family and my four-legged babies, and the whole thought of travel just stresses me out, no matter how fun or interesting or glamorous it may seem.

And that's really okay with me.

Whatever 'Type-A' I once had in me, has faded away now to 'Type B,' and I'm sure enjoying being me at my own pace.

I love not having to get up to the startle of an alarm these days, or having to prioritize my world based on other folk's needs and expectations. Course, I guess that doesn't make me the most ambitious blogger either, but I'm okay with that too!

I'm really just a cook, sharing my recipes here, not somebody who is looking for the spotlight, a television show, to be famous, or anything remotely like that. I worked hard for other people for more than 30 years straight. I've earned the right to relax a bit!

Anyway.... let's get to the recipe Mary for heaven's sake!

For this skillet meal, I wanted a result that was less dry than jambalaya and a bit more juicy if you will, but not soupy and definitely not gummy rice. The sort of texture you have when gumbo hits a bowl of rice and co-mingles. I think I've got it.

Also for this skillet dish, and others like it, I prefer to use a quicker cooking instant rice over long grain, so I tend to keep some in the pantry for those busy days. The rest of the time, it's the rice cooker, the pressure cooker (brown rice pilaf in 10 minutes y'all) and sometimes even in my Fasta Pasta if I only need a little bit!

I've used long grain before, and even stirred in already cooked rice, but I like the texture much better with minute rice and it is perfect for this dish. I hope that you enjoy it as much as we do. As always, scroll on down the page, past the step-by-step photos to find the full recipe text, with measurements and a printable to take to the kitchen. Here's how to make my Skillet Gumbolaya.

By the way, I used the mini bowl on my new food processor to mince the vegetables. Ya'll may remember, my old food processor, while still working, was duct taped together, so not really very counter-worthy, so I bought a new one.

I have to admit, I'm really enjoying finally having a food processor out on my counter and I've been using it a lot, having gotten over the whole "woe is me, if I use that, then I have to clean all of this" that, like everybody else, I was also thinking. I've actually used it a lot, and just a quick rinse as soon as I'm finished, and I can stack everything up and give it a quick wash with hot, soapy water after dinner.

Heat 1/2 tablespoon of the oil in a deep and large, lidded skillet - I often use a chicken fryer because it's a deeper skillet - over medium high heat. Add the sausage and cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes; remove and set aside. Cut chicken breasts into chunks, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper and/or Creole or Cajun seasoning. Add another 1/2 tablespoon of the oil and cook chicken in batches, only until lightly browned adding oil as needed; remove and set aside.

Add remaining oil and the vegetables; cook stirring regularly for 3 minutes; add garlic and cook another minute longer. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring constantly for 3 minutes. Stir in the seasonings.

Begin adding the liquid a little at a time, stirring until blended. I use hot water with Better than Bouillon chicken base, but you can use boxed commercial chicken broth if you prefer. Stir in the tomatoes (diced or stewed, chopped up) and okra, bring back to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and simmer at a low bubble for 20 minutes.

Return the sausage and chicken to skillet. Set aside a pinch of green onion for garnish if you like, then stir in rice and remaining green onion. Bring back up to boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and continue cooking about10 minutes longer. Remove from heat and set aside; let rest for 5 minutes. Rice will not completely absorb the liquid.

Serve this with some iced tea, French bread and a nice mixed garden salad.

For more of my favorite skillet and stovetop meals, visit my page on Pinterest!

If you make this or any of my recipes, I'd love to see your results! Just snap a photo and hashtag it #DeepSouthDish on social media or tag me @deepsouthdish on Instagram!

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Posted by on April 21, 2016

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