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Supper Club: Jambalaya, Pirates, and Chicken

jambalayaStrangely I didn’t learn this on my recent travels in the deep south of the US. It’s based on a vegetarian version from the Café Fresh Cookbook. The chorizo and prawns make all the difference though. This is a really good dish for many reasons: it’s really warming on a cold day, it looks beautiful as it is really colourful and it’s easy to make.

We served it as the main course at a Caribbean themed supper club, while friends provided jerked chicken wings and a fruity dessert. A few kids dressed up as pirates, had a treasure hunt, and watched Pirates of the Caribbean on DVD.

Serves 4-6


  • 1tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 green and red pepper chopped
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp allspice or Creole seasoning
  • 1 fresh red chilli, chopped
  • 400 ml vegetable stock
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 175g organic brown rice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 8-12 tiger prawns shelled
  • 150g chorizo, roughly chopped into cubes
  • 1 tin of kidney beans
  • 1 cup of frozen peas

supper clubMethod

Heat the oil in a large pot and add the onions and garlic and sauté until soft. Then add the peppers and celery and sauté for a further 10 minutes (this is important as the peppers give the dish its sweetness). Add the oregano, thyme, chilli, tomato puree and allspice/Creole seasoning and combine well. Saute for a further minute. Add the stock, tomatoes, rice, sea salt and bay leaves. Cover and bring to the boil then simmer for about 40 minutes. Meanwhile fry your chorizo in a separate pan for 2 minutes (a fried piece of chorizo is what I imagine a heart attack tastes like – sacrelicious). Add to the pot immediately.

About 15 minutes before the end add your prawns to the pot and allow to cook for a further ten minutes. 5 minutes from the end add the beans and peas.

Serve with beer while wearing a pointy white hat.


  1. This sounds tasty, but I wouldn’t call it jambalaya. Jambalaya is a Creole/Cajun dish that originated in New Orleans. There is some Caribbean influence in it, but never would it include beans or peas. Chorizo (and the peas) makes it more of a paella; a more authentic-tasting sausage would be a smoked Polish sausage like kielbasa.

  2. Hey bill, as I said I adapted a veggie version of the dish from the Cafe fresh cookbook. Adding the prawns and chorizo was my idea. But how could a polish sausage be anymore authentic to a Caribbean dish than a Spanish sausage like chorizo? It doesnt really taste like a paella. But maybe it doesnt taste like a jambalaya either. Hey, have I just invented a new dish?