Frost covered the trees and grass and rooftops this morning as I trekked out in the minus 30 degree temperatures with Big Zoom to do the grocery shopping. I’m a big fan of one pot meals, especially during the winter months when warm dinners are an absolute must. They also make for quick cleanup and typically freeze well for leftovers.
A few years back, my mother made an incredible gift for me for Christmas. I was living in Dublin, Ireland at the time, trying to find my way around Irish cooking, and failing pretty miserably with the slightly different ingredient lists and somewhat bland flavors. For Christmas that year, as I was celebrating far away with Mr. Zoom’s family, my mother sent me over a handmade scrapbook style cookbook full of some our family’s favorite recipes. This Jambalaya recipe was in there, and is in my opinion one of the best one pot meals in my repertoire. It may not look like much; it certainly isn’t the most beautiful dish to come out of my kitchen but it warms us and tastes delicious.
Mama’s New Orleans Style Jambalaya
Melt butter in large heavy pot. Add flour and stir until blended; then add sausage (crumble) and bell pepper. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add shrimp, tomatoes, water, onions, garlic, and parsley. Bring to a boil, add rice, and stir in Worcestershire sauce, salt, thyme, and red pepper flakes. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until rice is tender. Sitr occasionally.
This recipe makes an absolute ton of food. You’ll definitely have leftovers (unless you are feeding an army of teenage boys), and it will certainly freeze well.
My new favorite thing: food photography! I’ve always loved cookbooks and looking at gorgeous images of food. I’m a major foodie. Not necessarily in that I love all kinds of interesting and new age dishes, in that I just plain love good food. Thankfully I have a mother who also loves food and who is a wonderful cook, and a husband who will eat (and like) just about anything. We don’t go out to eat much, partially because it’s so expensive, but also because I love to try new recipes.
Enter my new “fancy camera”. So, in the past couple of weeks, I’ve learned that photography is ALL about light. Outdoor light is usually better than indoor light, and morning/evening light is better than middle of the day light. Therefore, I whipped up this (my sister in-laws) Rigatoni Bolognese at 9:15 this morning. You know you have the photography bug when you find yourself cooking dinner before breakfast just to get a shot of the meal in good light.
This recipe is a copycat of one of my brothers favorite pasta dishes at Palomino in Seattle. It’s quite spicy so a few months back I served it to Mr. Zoom, lover of all things hot and spicy, for dinner. He was hooked, and now it’s one of his favorite meals. So, just after he left for work, I made this Rigatoni Bolognese (with an extra heap of love) for our dinner tonight.
Sarah’s Rigatoni Bolognese