The fact that there are jambalaya paddles proves there’s no such thing as a small jambalaya pot. There are not many events in South Louisiana where jambalaya is not found among the food offerings. I never pass up a taste of jambalaya, for it is never ever the same. There are so many variations. What to add and what not to add to a pot of jambalaya is a topic of discussion as varied as what to add and not to add to a pot of boiling crawfish or gumbo. A discussion which usually involves a beer or two. Everyone has his or her beliefs and I find it is often due to what you were used to growing up. For me, a hot or cold jambalaya sandwich on good old-fashioned white bread was my favorite way to enjoy jambalaya…or maybe it was just the white bread. I also loved red beans and rice sandwiches and spaghetti fold-over sandwiches, too. While I’m confessing, I guess I should admit to one of my favorite sandwiches as a kid…mayo and pickle. Don’t judge, it has the perfect combination of crunchy and tangy flavors. (Although the last one I had was 10 years ago when a friend learned of my old sandwich flame and made me one…couldn’t refuse the kind gesture…and yes, I still enjoyed it.) Now let me quickly move on before you think I have absolutely no taste buds left after that admission.
Crunchy Jambalaya Salad: You can use any leftover jambalaya for this salad, but my favorite is chicken and sausage jambalaya. To me, this salad is a combination of a rice salad and a chicken salad. The flavors remind me of a Chinese chicken salad. Celery, water chestnuts, and almonds give it a nice crunch and the olives and artichokes give it a nice tanginess. Crunchy and tangy…I think I just realized why I love this leftover jambalaya salad sandwich so much. This salad is quick to throw together and only gets better as it sits in the fridge for a few hours. I love it on a croissant.
Put Your TO COOK IS TO CREATE Thinking Cap On: Have leftover rotisserie chicken? Add it. Have a tomato? Chop it and add it. Not a lover of curry powder? Try paprika, ginger, or cumin powder. No almonds? Use pecans. No olives but have pimentos? Add them. What else could you add for a crunch? Canned Chinese vegetables? Chopped bell peppers? Shredded Carrots? I like adding thinly shredded cabbage for a change. If omitting artichoke hearts, give salad a little squeeze of lemon. No leftover jambalaya? Use wild rice or try leftover dirty rice. Not a salad sandwich fan? Stuff a tomato or serve over lettuce. Still have a cup of jambalaya leftover? Make a pot of soup.
FOOD FUN: My hubby would never eat jambalaya by itself, but he loves this salad and leftover jambalaya muffins. Is there a food item that someone in your family dislikes? Do you ever sneak it in a dish without them knowing? You’re secret is safe with me.