Logan was the den mother at the newspaper where I worked in Mississippi. She was always having people over to her house for wonderful, simple food: mushroom chicken, spaghetti, banana pudding. My favorite Logan meal was her red beans and rice, and she was kind enough to share the recipe, along with her notes on how to get just the right amount of spice and smokiness in the dish.
• 5 cans of light red kidney beans (any brand will do)
• 1 package Bryan's Smoked Sausage (the pack has three sausages in it)
• 1 package Bryan's Beef Sausage (also has three in it) (I like to use two types of sausage .... It just tastes better to me that way)
• ½ onion
• 1 green bell pepper
• 1 bunch green onions
• Tony's Creole Seasoning
• 2 cups rice
Slice veggies into relatively small pieces. Cut the sausages into half-inch pieces and brown over medium heat in skillet. (The sausage is technically already cooked, but browning it adds flavor and a nice crust.)
Combine all five cans of beans, sausage and veggies in a crock pot.
This next step is the only tricky part: Add the Tony's Creole Seasoning. This is only tricky because it is clearly subjective. I've never really taken the time to measure it out. After you've combined all the ingredients, I would add about a quarter-cup of seasoning to the pot and stir. This is erring on the side of caution ... you can add more seasoning later if it isn't enough.
Next, add enough water to cover the mixture (about three to three and a half cups).
Cover and turn on high for six to eight hours. After six or seven hours, taste. If red beans aren't spicy enough, add more Tony's and let cook for another hour on high.
If you need to hold dinner past the eight hours, simply turn on low or warm and it will keep.
Cook rice according to package and enjoy!
To read Eleanor Barkhorn's post about recreating a Mississippi favorite, click here for the story.