Great recipe/base that you can dress up or down depending on your purpose. For those who have said it's expensive or that there's still a lot of prep time, here is what I do for a last-minute version that makes it cheaper, faster, and more pantry-savvy: Replace broth with boullion+water, use Kraft jambalaya seasoning (comes in a large spice container in the spice aisle), frozen chicken breasts, and 1/2 bag of BirdsEye frozen Pepper Stir-Fry (just red/yellow/green peppers and onions). I throw all of that plus remaining ingredients in the crock pot, leaving the breasts frozen/whole. After 8 hours on low, I slice up the chicken and add instant rice and cook 25 more min. Drops prep time to about 3 min. to slice celery & sausage, and another couple minutes to throw everything in pot.
This version is never quite up to the standards of using fresh veggies, customizing spices, etc. but it is good for something that is no-fuss, and not too pricey. I don't have kids, but I constantly cook for my boyfriend's friends. And after working all day I’d rather not waste my time or money making them meals that I slave over with fresh and/or expensive ingredients. This is the perfect answer for that!
On a different note, to commenter WHATAYAWANT: get a new butcher!! Andouille sausage may not be as common as italian, but even before this recipe I knew what it was. And I do NOT cook a lot, nor do I even really like sausage. Outrageous that a butcher wouldn't have even heard of it.
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Great recipe/base that you can dress up or down depending on your purpose. For those who have...