New Orleans Chef Alon Shaya might be the chef in the family, but he can’t take credit for this meal’s main event: wife Emily’s red beans and rice. Her spicy, tender beans feed a large crowd, especially when served over fluffy, buttery rice.
Emily's Red Beans
1/4 pound bacon, roughly chopped
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium-size yellow onion, diced
1 medium-size green bell pepper, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 tablespoon hot sauce (such as Tabasco), plus more for serving
1 1/2 pound dried red kidney beans (soaked overnight)
1 large smoked ham hock (about 12 1/2 ounces)
2 quarts chicken stock
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 bunch scallions, green parts only, sliced
1/2 cup canola oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups uncooked jasmine rice
3 cups chicken broth or water
How to Make It
Place a heavy-bottomed Dutch oven over medium. Add bacon and olive oil, and cook, stirring often, until fat drippings are rendered, 3 to 5 minutes. Add onion, bell pepper, and celery, and cook, stirring often, until onion is translucent but not too broken down, 3 to 5 minutes. Add bay leaf, paprika, and hot sauce.
Drain, rinse, and sort soaked red beans; add beans and ham hock to pot. Pour in chicken stock, covering beans. Increase heat to high, and bring mixture to a boil, skimming off and discarding foam from surface. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until beans are tender, 3 to 4 hours. Remove ham hock about the last hour of cooking, and cut meat from bone. Chop ham meat, and add to beans, stirring to further break beans apart. (Check beans periodically to ensure they aren’t boiling and sticking to the bottom of the pot.)
Remove and discard bay leaf. Stir in salt, sugar, and, if desired, more hot sauce just before serving. Serve beans over Emily’s Rice. Garnish with scallions, if desired.
For Emily's Rice: Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high. Add onion, butter, bay leaf, and salt, and cook, stirring often, until onions are soft and translucent, about 6 minutes.
Add rice, and stir well. Stir in chicken broth, and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook 15 minutes.
Remove pan from heat, and let stand 5 minutes covered. Fluff rice with a fork.