Sit down my friends. I am about to tell you the real truth about dirty rice. I am going to say some things that might both thrill and shock you. I am not talking about some prepackaged dirty rice, mop tit. I am talking about the real stuff. Hard core, down and dirty, dirty rice. One of my favorite meals is roast pig, dirty rice, potato salad and a green salad dressed only with vinegar, oil, sugar, salt and pepper. Its a simple meal for sure, but not simple to recreate. Not every day do you come across a cuchon delait. Won’t be long though until I start asking Big Daddy to make me a pig roasting area in the backyard…though not sure how our Homeowner’s Association would feel about that? Maybe if I do it and then feed them a big divided Styrofoam plate full of roast pig and all the trimmings, they would overlook it? Note to self. Ha ha!! But when I do want to at least get a taste of that meal, I can make this dirty rice. It puts me there…I am at Momee’s house and everyone is there.
I am so blessed to have those memories and I am so lucky my mama taught me how to make this dirty rice. She has never been afraid to tell me the truth about many things in life and what is really in the dirty rice. I remember saying to my mama, after she told me the truth, “say what? You put what in there?” and she replied “well yeah baby, that’s what makes it tastes so good.” Simple enough truth there Bern. Simple enough. Let me say, at that point I had been eating dirty rice for a long time and I frankly did not care what was in it. When I had my first baby, my mama came and stayed for us for a few weeks. She cooked and cleaned and took care of us. She (tried) to wait on me hand and foot. She tried to tell me some truth (every time I had a baby) by telling me to rest. Don’t over do it. I was pretty stubborn and did not always listen. As I sit here 11 years and 4 kids later…I kind of wish I had listened to her. Looking back on that time, I cherish those memories. I will never forget the amazing meals she made for us. Big Daddy was in hog heaven. He loves my mama’s cooking and frankly I am not sure if that not one of the reasons he married me. If so, oh well. She always knew the way to endear him to me was to feed him well. More truths from my mama’s book. She helped me rope in my man. Thanks Mama!! Anyway, one night she made us stuffed bell peppers with this dirty rice and holy cow…they were scrumptious. I am quite certain this was about the time I learned the dirty truth about my family’s dirty rice. And I was not deterred one bit. I suppose she thought, well she gave birth, she can handle the truth about what is in dirty rice too. We lapped it up with gusto!! Now, let me go on and spill the beans. True, Cajun dirty rice is made with ground meat, chicken livers and beef liver. Oh and Savoie’s real cajun dressing mix. Not sure what all is in that and I really don’t care. Now, I have shared that secret and I feel so much better. It is not that awful but some of you may have a hard time with such information. Please know, if you have never eaten real dirty rice, you owe it to yourself, your children, your loved ones…to make it and try it. Most of these ingredients will be nearby one another in the grocery store. In Kroger, its all in a freezer case off to the side of the meat section.
I will be honest and say cutting up the livers is not my favorite thing to do but when they are somewhat frozen still, its a lot easier and less bothersome. Just a thought. Also, this recipe makes a good bit. My mom tells me to freeze the rest of the stuff that is not used. After Benny Boo was born, she made Big Daddy a mess of liver and onions with the leftover beef liver and encourages me to do the same…because she is wise and knows the truth. A well fed Big Daddy is a happy Big Daddy. Because I love the man, I do this, and it is absolutely a labor of love, because I truly cannot stand liver and onions. He is always really appreciative, so I guess that is good enough. But if you want to just double the recipe, then use all of the liver and the dressing mix.
Real Cajun Dirty Rice
Stuff you need~
1 pound ground meat
1 medium onion, chopped fine
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped fine
1/2 container chicken livers, roughly chopped
1 piece of beef liver, roughly chopped
1/2 container Savoie’s real dressing mix
2-3 cups of cooked white rice
bell peppers, blanched and cooled if you intend to make stuffed bell peppers
What to do with the stuff~
Start out by browning ground meat in a large, heavy bottom skillet. After a few minutes, toss in the chopped onions, celery, and bell pepper to the ground meat. Cook this over medium heat.
Now, add in your chopped up livers. Stir in the dressing mix.
Just keep cooking over medium heat until its all nice and brown. Add in some water, maybe 1/2 cup at a time. You are going to do what my mom calls “smother” this mixture. That means add in water and allow it to continue to cook until water cooks down. Then add more. I cover my skillet after each water addition. Make sure you check it to make sure you know when it needs more water. Next, you will start to add your cooked rice.
I just eyeball it. I make 3 cups of rice and used about 2 cups of it. But you might want to add more or less to get the consistency you want.