Out of all my recipes that I have accumulated over the past few months, this one is Eli’s favorite- hands down. Every single time I ask him what I should include on the weekly menu, he replies, “Red Beans and Rice.”
Luckily, it’s easy to do. And the best part is that it’s dirt cheap. All you need is a slow cooker, and about 7-8 hours, and you’re on your way to a good Southern meal deserving of its own jazz ensemble.
It was a happy little coincidence that I also chose to prepare this meal on Fat Tuesday. (All you mid-westerners, keep your paczki comments to yourself, please! I miss me a good-old-Michigan Fat Tuesday.)
- 1 lb dried red kidney beans
- 1/2 lb thinly sliced turkey sausage (this is optional. I used chicken sausage this last time and it was great. I also usually use the whole package, which is 1 lb, because I have no use with 2 left over sausages. You can omit the meat all-together, if you want.)
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 diced green pepper
- 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
- 1 tsp garlic (I used two cloves)
- 7 cups water
- 3 cups dried rice
Cover and cook on high for 6-8 hours, or until the kidney beans are tender and there isn’t a ton of liquid left in the slow cooker.
Make rice (we like white rice the best for this) according to package directions (rice maker, stove top, microwave, whatever you choose)
Dump the cooked rice into the slow cooker and stir well. Let sit for 5 minutes.
This makes a big batch, but it tastes great re-heated for lunch options!