Red Beans and Rice

Published January 1, 2010. From Cook's Illustrated.

Why this recipe works:

To replicate this traditional red beans and rice recipe from New Orleans using ingredients easily found in supermarkets across the country, we made some simple substitutions: small red beans for Camellia-brand dried red beans and bacon for hard-to-find tasso. Fine-tuning the proportions of… read more

To replicate this traditional red beans and rice recipe from New Orleans using ingredients easily found in supermarkets across the country, we made some simple substitutions: small red beans for Camellia-brand dried red beans and bacon for hard-to-find tasso. Fine-tuning the proportions of sautéed green peppers, onions, and celery gave the recipe balance, and the right ratio of chicken broth to water added complexity without giving the dish an overpowering chicken flavor.

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Serves 6 to 8

If you are pressed for time you can “quick-brine” your beans. In step 1, combine the salt, water, and beans in a large Dutch oven and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove the pot from the heat, cover, and let stand 1 hour. Drain and rinse the beans and proceed with the recipe. If you can’t find andouille sausage, substitute kielbasa. Tasso can be difficult to find, but if you use it, omit the bacon and paprika in step 2 and cook 4 ounces finely chopped tasso in 2 teaspoons vegetable oil until lightly browned, 4 to 6 minutes, then proceed with the recipe. In order for the starch from the beans to thicken the cooking liquid, it is important to maintain a vigorous simmer in step 2. The beans can be cooled, covered tightly, and refrigerated for up to 2 days. To reheat, add enough water to the beans to thin them slightly.

Ingredients

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