Monday, August 4, 2008

Healthier Red Beans and Rice

I am so proud of this meal. All the delicious-ness of regular red beans and rice but less fat and calories. I plugged it into sparkrecipes and it came out to around 300 calories and about 7 g of fat per serving, not bad! If you didn't know, I lived in New Orleans for 13 years. And I am a sucker for cajun/creole food. I have a traditional red beans and rice dish in my blog, but I honestly don't think I'll make this dish the traditional way again (not any time soon anyway). In place of white rice I used brown, and instead of the pork smoked sausage I used turkey smoked sausage. I really couldn't tell the difference either. This dish came out so creamy (thanks to mashing the beans a bit) as well as hearty. Perfect for a traditional red beans and rice Monday.

I used my favorite cajun seasonings to spice things up. The dish wouldn't be the same without them.

I'm submitting this recipe to Joelen's (Joelen's Culinary Adventures) Cajun/Nola Eats blogging event. This event focuses on Famous New Orleans Chefs and is also an avenue to remember those who have suffered through Katrina.

Healthier Red Beans and Rice
(makes 6 large servings)

2 cups brown rice
2 cans dark red kedney beans drained and rinsed
1 cup bell pepper (I used orange but any color will do)
1 medium onion finely diced
1 cup diced celery
3 garlic cloves minced
1 Tbs. canola oil
1 bay leaf
1 Tbs. fresh chopped parsley
1 link turkey smoked sausage chopped into half moons
5 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth/stock
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 Tbs (or more to taste) Tony Chachere's creole seasoning
cayenne pepper to taste

Heat a large pot over medium heat and add canola oil. Add onions, peppers and celery (The Cajun Trinity) and saute about 5 minutes. Add sausage and saute about 3 minutes more. Add rice and garlic and stir occaisionally for about 3-5 minutes until rice is toasted. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. When pot comes to a boil reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer 35 minutes. Uncover and mash some of the beans with a potato masher or a large spoon so mixture gets creamy. Cook uncovered for about 10-15 more minutes. Serve with pepper sauce.


Cate said...

I've been on a bean kick lately but I've still never made red beans and rice! I'm definitely going to try this and I love that it's so healthy!

Anonymous said...

We would like to feature this recipe on our blog. Please email if interested. Thanks :)

What's Cookin Chicago said...

Awesome recipe, especially because its a healthier verision! Thanks so much for submitting it to the blogging event this week!! :)

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, I LOOOOOOOOOOVE red beans and rice. Like SERIOUSLY I could eat it every day. This looks so freaking good.

Kelly said...

I've been sooo hungry for rice & beans lately -- I'm going to have to try this one!

Great recipe!

That Girl said...

This is great! We have some smoked turkey sausage in the fridge right now because the hubs has decided its his new favorite thing ever.

Laurel said...

Just curious about the nutrition stats on your turkey sausage. I picked up some wonderful looking chicken sausage (cajun style) that would work wonderfully here I think. I wanna run the stats though. Looks awesome!

Anonymous said...

Red beans and rice didn't miss her! I have never had this, but I like that you came up with a healthier version :)

Arlene Delloro said...

I'm on Weight Watchers and have a turkey kielbasa in the fridge. I have leftovers tonight, but will try it tomorrow night or next week at the latest. My SO loves spicy; me, not so much, so I can adjust that. Thanks for another great entree.