Creole Jambalaya

This Caribbean pepper is famous for being the hottest chile pepper in the world. They come in a variety of shapes and colors(yellow, orange,green, red,chocolate). Not only are they extremely hot, but they also have a unique,distinctively fruity flavor.

It is the key ingredient in the popular Jamaican Jerk sauce. The habanero is also widely used in many different types of hot sauces. The popularity of this chile pepper continues to grow and is becoming easier to find on the grocery shelf.

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For the sauce:
3 Tbsp bacon fat
4 oz. ham, diced (preferrably smoked)
4 oz. andouille sausages, diced
1 large onion
3 stalks celery, diced
1 green pepper, diced
2 scotch bonnet (habanero) peppers, diced
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 Tbsp creole seasoning (recipe follows)
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes
1 (14 oz) can tomato sauce
2 bay leaves
1 cup water
1 chicken boillon cube

For the Jambalaya:
4 oz butter
4 tsp creole seasoning
16 oz large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups cooked diced chicken
12 oz andouille sausages, sliced then cut into half circles
4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
4 cups white rice, cooked
4 tsp fresh parsley, chopped
4 whole scotch bonnet (habanero) peppers for garnish


For the sauce: Heat bacon fat (or butter) in a heavy saucepan and saute diced ham and sausage until crisp. Add onion, celery, both types of peppers, and garlic. Saute until tender, about 15 minutes.

Add creole seasoning (recipe follows), tomatoes, sauce, and bay leaves. Cook 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add water and bouillon and cook on low for 45 minutes. Then remove bay leaves. Sauce can be made a day ahead.

For the jambalaya: Heat butter in skillet, and saute andouille sausage until crisp. Sprinkle shrimp with creole seasoning, and saute until opaque, but not tough. Add chicken and bacon. Deglaze the pan with the prepared sauce and heat through.

Stir in hot cooked rice. Serve topped with chopped fresh parsley and a whole scotch bonnet pepper. Note: diced leftover pork, crawfish, or other meat or seafood may be added as well.

Creole Seasoning: Combine and store in an airtight jar.
2 Tbs salt
2 1/2 Tbsp paprika
2 Tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp black pepper
1 Tbsp onion powder
1 Tbsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp oregano
1 Tbsp thyme, dried but not ground.

Recipe serves 4-6.