Living in Utah you might wonder if this is authentic and worth trying. All I can tell you is that every time I make it, people LOVE it and eat it to the last drop in the pan. Don’t be frightened away by the list of ingredients – it’s super easy to make in the crock pot. If you live by a Honey Baked Ham store, go in and ask to buy a ham bone; put one in the freezer for next batch. Their bones come with a ton of ham on them, and the sweet, smokey taste, just makes this all the better. ENJOY!
Best Authentic New Orleans Red Beans and Rice
1 lb. (2 cups) dried red beans, rinsed and sorted over
1 – 1 1/2 lbs. chopped ham*
1 – 2 lbs. smoked ham hocks*
*Use a Honey Baked ham bone with some of the leftover meat on it as a replacement for the chopped ham and ham hocks. Either option works well.
1 medium to large onion, chopped
4-5 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium – large green bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp. Montreal Steak Seasoning
1 Tbl. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbl. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1/2 tsp. Emerills Original Seasoning
1 tsp. hot sauce
4 bay leaves
3 Tbl. dried parsley
1 tsp. thyme leaves
1/2 lb. smoked sausage, split in half lengthwise and cut into ½” pieces
3 oz. diced pepperoni
3 Tbl. chopped garlic
5 Knorr chicken boullion cubes (to desired taste)
8 cups water (more if needed as beans cook)
2 cans pinto beans in it’s juice, pureed
Cooked white rice
Place the beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with 4-5 inches of water over top of beans. Let soak for 8 hours or overnight.Drain and rinse well.Cut up sausage into bite sized pieces and pepperoni into sections.Beginning with ham, then the beans
Combine all the ingredients (except pureed pinto beans and rice) in at least a 6 qt. crock pot. Add in the water, more may be needed during cooking process
Cook on low for 8-10 hours, until beans are tender, but not mushy.
When the beans are tender, remove the ham bone with meat if that is what you used.
Allow to cool a bit, then remove the meat from bone, cut into bite-sized pieces and return the meat to the crock pot with the other ingredients.
Continue to cook 30 minutes or so.
Remove the bay leaves and discard.
Puree the pinto beans along with the juices they are packed in.
Add to the bean and meat mixture.
Cook another 15 minutes.
To serve, place a scoop of cooked rice in a bowl, spoon on the bean mixture and top with green onion if desired.
Serve with a bottle of hot sauce for those who like extra.
This recipe gets better after sitting in the fridge to allow flavors to marry, so making it ahead a day or two ahead is good. This also freezes very well. After thawing if it is too thick, add in a bit of broth or bouillon and water.
Carrie Groneman’s recipe. Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow
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