Cajun Jambalaya – Veganized!

I have to give credit where credit is due. Prior to going vegetarian, I dug Emeril Lagasse’s recipes and his show on The Food Network. I did have to tune out the overuse of “BAM!” but to see some of his New Orleans works of food art made me smile. Being part South Carolinian thanks to Momma Mac, I am always appreciative, as someone who has NEVER had Cajun or Creole food in my life.

I’ve always wanted to try Jambalaya, and not from a Zataran’s box. The closest I’ve had is the South Carolinian version that was more like paella except with spicy red rice. A “boil” of shellfish and sausage mixed into the rice with some shredded chicken was something my family looked forward to having for Sunday dinners and leftovers. BUT, it wasn’t Jambalaya.

This year, Artie and I decided we were going to have our own little Mardi Gras foodie feast. The only thing I could think of making was Jambalaya. And with that, I sought out an Emeril Lagasse recipe for it, because I knew it would be awesome for omnivores. So, how would I veganize it? It actually was pretty simple.

The chicken was replaced with Soy Curls. Ponzu-marinated tofu strips substituted for the shrimp. I used some Tofurky Italian sausages in place of the Andouille sausage. I also halved the olive oil, and used ground tellicherry instead or standard black pepper. That was it!

The end result? Some pretty darn good Louisiana vegan cuisine! Multi-layered, full of flavor. And the bonus was that we got a second recipe from Emeril for his Creole seasoning which yielded a lot. So, we can make this again!

Now, I’m going to New Orleans this summer. I wonder where we can go for some good ole Louisiana VEGAN cooking. Anyone have suggestions?

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