Gumbo and Jambalaya Get Mashed up For Gumbo-laya

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Place a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, and add the olive oil; once the oil is hot, add the sliced sausage in, and allow it to caramelize and brown for a few minutes; once well browned, remove the sausage from the pot, and set it aside for a moment.
Next, add the chicken pieces into the pot along with a sprinkle or two of salt and pepper, and allow them to brown in the oil/sausage drippings for about 2-3 minutes; remove the chicken pieces from the pot, and set aside for a moment.
To the same pot add in the diced celery, onion and bell pepper, and caramelize it for about 2-3 minutes in the oil, then add in the bay leaves, the Creole seasoning, the cayenne pepper, ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon of black pepper, and stir to combine.
Add in the garlic and stir, and once it becomes aromatic, add in the tomato paste, and cook for about 1 minute to cook out the “raw” tomato flavor; add in the sliced okra, the diced tomatoes with juice, the hot chicken stock, as well as the browned sausage and chicken, and stir to combine.
Allow the gumbo-laya to simmer gently on low/medium-low, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
While the gumbo-laya simmers, prepare the fragrant garlic rice: place a medium pot over medium-high heat, and add in the olive oil; once hot, add in the pressed garlic, and stir to combine; once the garlic becomes fragrant, add in the rice, the salt and the pepper and stir, and allow the rice to “toast” in the garlic oil for about 2 minutes.
Next, add in the water, stir, and simmer the rice, covered, for about 20 minutes, or until tender; turn off the heat, and after 5 minutes, fluff with fork and keep warm.
After the gumbo-laya has simmered for 20 minutes, add in the shrimp (you can season it with a sprinkle of salt/pepper if you wish), and simmer for only 2-3 minutes more as to not overcook it.
Finish the gumbo-laya by stirring in the chopped parsley and cilantro, and serve over the garlic rice with some additional spice/heat options like hot sauce, red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper, if desired.

Enjoy !


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