Clay's Kitchen : Grain Recipes

Grain Recipes

© Copyright 1995-2017, Clay Irving <clay@panix.com>, Manhattan Beach, CA USA

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Dirty Rice

Recipe from: Gary Koinm
Servings: 8 to 10

Being born in French Acadian country and now living in Houston I am truly appauled by the recipes submitted for dirty rice. One does not add creme of mushroom soup and a roux to dirty rice. Anyone who takes short cuts in preparation of our wonderful cuisine has missed the point that cooking is a labor of love, and certainly the time to create our nation's most celebrated regional cuisine takes time and effort. The recipe below will make you the most incredible dirty rice imaginable. Yes, it's time consuming but Voilà ! Qu'un differnece. The author adds that this dish will feed a "small army".

1 pound lean ground round
½ pound ground pork
4 ounces fresh chicken livers
½ pound boiled, tender minced chicken gizzards
½ pound smoked sausage
2 large yellow onions, peeled and choped medium-fine
6 ribs celery chopped medium
2 medium bell peppers diced medium fine
2 carrots chopped coarse
4 chicken boullion cubes
⅓ cup finely chopped parsley
⅓ cup finely chopped green onions- include tops
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
½ teaspoon cayenne
4 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon Trappey's hot sauce
1 ½ cup cooked long rain rice
3 cups water for the rice
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

In a small stock pot add 1 quart of water and 8 ounces of chicken gizzards, 1 of the yellow onions (chopped), 2 stalks of celery, chopped carrots and the chicken boullion. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 90 minutes until gizzards are tender and almost falling apart. Remove from stock, let cool, then chop medium fine. Set aside and keep some of the reserve stock. Otherwise freeze this stock—it's a very rich stock for other recipes.

In a rice pot, wash the long grain rice under cold water until the water turns clear (about 4 to 6 times). Add 3 cups of water (if the water is higher than the lenghth from the tip of your middle finger to the first knuckle then you have too much water. Add a teaspoon of salt. Bring rice to a boil then reduce the heat to low. Cover the rice and simmer for 20 minutes. Do not remove the lid from the rice pot while cooking. Remove and set aside. This may be done anytime during the cooking/preparation process.

In a big cast iron (dutch oven), sweat your Holy Trinity (that's the celery, bell pepper and onions) until the onions start to turn transparant. Add chicken gizzards, and sauté until gizzards are cooked. Remove gizzards from the Holy Trinity and chop very fine. Return to the Holy Trinity and then add ground beef and ground pork over medium heat brown until fully cooked—Don't over cooked—When the liquid turns from pink to clear the beef and pork is cooked. Drain.

Strain through a collander to get rid of any excess fat. Return to the Dutch over and on a low fire add the chopped sausage, garlic cloves, and fully cooked, chopped chicken gizzards. Remember these gizzards must be very tender and not chewy. Add salt and pepper to taste—I like very little salt but don't be stingy on the black pepper!. Cover and let simmer for 1 to 2 hours—The longer you simmer the meat mixture the more intense the fusion of flavors will be. If mixture becomes too dry add a small amount of the reserve chicken gizzard stock.

Take the cooked rice and add to the meat mixture and stir thoroughly, adding the chopped parsley and green onions. Continue to simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the parsley and green onions wilt. Add Trappey's hot sauce, sparingly, at the end.

Food from French Acadiana is not really hot, but well-seasoned. For people who simply must adulterate our wonderful cuisine a la Acadian with all the hot stuff, then that's why the gawds make Trappeys and even (sigh!) Tabasco, to put on after the dishes have been prepared.

This recipe of dirty rice will feed a small army as a main dish. It is also wonderful in stuffed cabbage rolls, or used to stuff a chicken or a duck. It freezes well and is always better the next day.

Appreciate this meal with a fresh salad, a French bread, and a bottle of black one of Chardonnay or pinot. For the people that does not wish to drink alcohol, frozen tea is a wonderful option. After all, this is the house wine of Louisiana and Texas, the step of is not? good appetite!


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