As I have mentioned in previous posts, I have a special connection to New Orleans. My mother and my maternal grandparents, each 100% Sicilian, were all born and raised in this favorite foodie town. Whether it’s gumbo or grillades and grits, eggs NOLA or red beans and rice, you can taste the culinary history of the Cresent City in every bite.
The inspiration for this soup came from one of my husbands favorite dishes … jambalaya.
- 4 Tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 cup coarsely chopped onion
- 1 cup coarsely chopped celery
- 1 cup coarsely chopped green bell pepper
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 1/2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless, skinless, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup flour
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne (ground red pepper)
- 1 cup white rice, long grain uncooked
- Using a large soup pot, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the onions, celery and bell pepper. Cook over medium-high heat 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the garlic, cook 2 minutes.
- Transfer the vegetables to a bowl. Melt the other 2 tablespoons of butter and cook the chicken until it is no longer pink in center. Sprinkle the flour over the chicken and give it a good stir. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes while stirring constantly. Return the Creole Trinity (onions, celery, bell peppers) and the garlic to the pot.
- Stir in the chicken broth, diced tomatoes, bay leaves, 1 teaspoon salt and cayenne pepper. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Cover and cook 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, bring 2 cups of water to a boil, stir in rice, cover and reduce heat. Cook 16 minutes or until rice is done. Stir the rice into the pot.
- Serve with sweet potato biscuits or your favorite cornbread.