The first time I had “dirty rice” was in college when my Texan roommate made it from a Zatarain’s box. She couldn’t believe that I’d never had it. It was pretty spicy for me then, but I think my taste buds have gotten more acquired to spicy foods since I’ve been in college—I love spicy food!
So with the plentiful stock of turkey sausage I have in my freezer (thank you sale on Jennie-O), I thought I’d make my own homemade “dirty” rice. Since I’m not from Louisiana, nor have I ever been there, I doubt my “dirty rice” was authentic at all (that’s why I keep using “quotes” around “dirty”). But it was still tasty!
Normally “dirty rice” has chicken liver or giblets (gag me!), which give the dark “dirty” color. It also includes green bell pepper, onion, and celery and is sometimes topped with parsley or green onions.
Well, my version is a whole lot healthier, with brown rice, turkey sausage with the fat drained off, and a whole load of veggies. I used a whole package of sausage, because we were eating it as a main dish. If you’re making it for a side, I’d recommend using about half the amount.
[recipe by me]
2 cups brown rice, uncooked (or leftover rice)
3–6 links of hot Italian turkey sausage (depending on how meaty you like it), casings removed
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2–3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 small yellow or white onion, chopped
2–4 green onions, chopped (optional)
Cajun seasoning (I used Cajun's Choice Blackened Seasoning)
Cook rice according to directions.
Heat large skillet over medium-high heat and cook turkey sausage, crumbling, until browned. Can drain off some oil if desired. Add bell pepper, celery and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are translucent, about 5–7 minutes.
Add rice to skillet and stir to combine. Liberally add cajun seasoning, to meet your desired heat.
Serve topped with green onions.
Dirrrrrty rice, done pretty clean! ;)