By Kelly Bogard
This week, Texas Farm Bureau has been celebrating Food Check-Out Week. Food Check-Out Week is all about promoting Texas agriculture, sharing facts about food and opening the lines of communication between farmers and consumers.
As someone who works with farmers and ranchers, and as a consumer of their products, I get to see both sides of the agriculture conversation. I really feel like I have the best of both worlds because I get to see the good in both all of the time. I see how much the farmers and ranchers care about their jobs and their families, and I feel safe knowing that I am serving safe and affordable food to mine. In honor of Food Check-Out Week and Texas agriculture, I decided to highlight some of the wonderful crops and commodities that are grown right here in our home state.
For Texas Jambalaya, you will need…
2 cups Texmati rice, uncooked
3-3/4 cups water
1 lb. 80% lean ground beef
1 lb. 90% lean ground beef
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 “1015” sweet onion, chopped
2 cups frozen sweet corn
1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained
2 cans (14-1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes, 1 drained
1-1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cumin
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 cups Colby Jack cheese, grated
Texas Jambalaya has a little bit of everything in it. My mom would call it a pantry recipe. It features fresh vegetables that we grow here in Texas, along with beef and rice, which we also produce here.
First things first. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine the ground meat, bell pepper and “1015” onion in a skillet to brown. Season with garlic salt to taste. Speaking of “1015” onions, do you know the story behind their name? Here in Texas, the optimal planting date is Oct. 15—hence, “1015.”
While your meat and veggies are cooking, go ahead and combine the Texmati rice and water in a pot and bring to a boil. Once it begins to boil, cover and reduce the heat so it simmers for approximately 20 minutes.
Once your meat is finished cooking, drain off any excess fat and move the mixture to a large bowl. Add your black beans and corn. Then stir to combine. Most of the corn grown in Texas is for livestock feed, but we have sweet corn here, too. A single corn seed produces a plant that yields about 800 kernels per ear. That’s a lot of corn.
Now it’s time for the tomatoes and seasoning. Add one can of tomatoes with the juices and the other one without. Then add the salt, cumin and chili powder. Stir well.
Go ahead and throw in your cooked rice and mix again. This particular rice has really good flavor and is grown here in Texas. In fact, Texas is the No. 5 rice-producing state in the U.S. (based on a five-year average) and produces 1 billion pounds per year.
Finally, move your mixture to a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish and top with grated Colby Jack cheese. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until warmed through.
I encourage all of you to join the discussion with other consumers and farmers about how our food is grown. Opening the lines of communication between farms and homes is important to the future of Texas agriculture and all of our families.
From all of us at Texas Table Top, enjoy!
Recipe: Texas Jambalaya
Summary: Sweet goodness that is good for you
- 2 cups Texmati rice, uncooked
- 3-3/4 cups water
- 1 lb. 80% lean ground beef
- 1 lb. 90% lean ground beef
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 “1015” sweet onion, chopped
- 2 cups frozen sweet corn
- 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained
- 2 cans (14-1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes, 1 drained
- garlic salt
- 1-1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 tbsp. chili powder
- 2 cups Colby Jack cheese, grated
- Combine beef, bell pepper and onion in a large skillet and brown.
- Pour rice and water into a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and cover. Allow rice to simmer for approximately 20 minutes.
- Drain grease from beef mixture and combine with beans and corn.
- Add tomatoes and seasoning. Stir until combined.
- Pour in cooked rice and blend.
- Move to a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish and top with cheese.
- Bake at 375 degrees for around 20 minutes or until heated through.
Prep time (duration): 30 minutes
Cook time (duration): 20 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 8-10