Home / Pairing with Mere / Grilled Almost Jambalaya Paired with Verveine Grenache, Sessi GSM or Mathis Rosé of Grenache
Grilled Almost Jambalaya Paired with Verveine Grenache, Sessi GSM or Mathis Rosé of Grenache

Grilled Almost Jambalaya Paired with Verveine Grenache, Sessi GSM or Mathis Rosé of Grenache

Now that I’m living in New Orleans, I’m embracing Cajun and Creole dishes. However, many of these are heavy, rich and spicy so often I look for ways to lighten up the recipes. After visiting us, my dad decided to make his lighter version of the popular NOLA dish, Jambalaya using his smoker. We don’t have a smoker, so we simply put a few wood chips in a disposable aluminum pie pan with water and added it to the grill which added a little of that smoke flavor, but if you have a smoker it will add even more depth to this dish.

Ideally, you’ll need a grill basket so you don’t lose the ingredients into the grill. But if you don’t have a grill basket you could put all the ingredients on a sheet pan that can go on the grill.

Here are the ingredients we used, but you can adapt it to your own personal preferences. The only items you can’t omit is the holy trinity because that is unnegotiable in Creole cooking. The trinity is onion, celery and bell pepper. We added more veggies than normal to bump up the nutritional content.

Note: For all those New Orleanians out there, this is simply a spin on traditional Jambalaya—we know it’s not the same thing.

Ingredients

2 Bell peppers, coarsely chopped

2 Celery stalks, coarsely chopped

1 Onion, coarsely chopped

9 Baby bella mushrooms, stems removed and coarsely chopped

2 Carrots, shaved into thick, short shavings (or you could cut into thin rounds)

4 cups combo of leafy greens, arugula and spinach

1-2 cloves garlic, chopped fine

8-10 ounces plum or cherry tomatoes, cut in half

Combo of rosemary, chives, parsley, or any other herbs you like

3-4 whole pecans, diced

1 tbsp Lowry’s seasoned pepper or any seasoned pepper you like

1.25lbs shrimp, deveined & shells removed (16-20 per pound count)

2 5-6 ounces pieces of salmon

2-3 ounces dry white wine or rosé wine

3-4 ounces avocado oil

Optional ingredients

*1-2 Jalapenos, chopped, (if you just want a hint of spice omit the seeds and ribs, if you want spicy include the rips and seeds, the more the spicier)

*Cilantro

*Sausage

 How to Prepare

  1. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and cover or Ziplock bag and allow to marinate for 2-3 hours or overnight.
  2. Before cooking, pre-heat grill or smoker and place all ingredients in the wire grill basket (we placed a piece of foil on the bottom of the basket to make sure we didn't lose any yummy goodness). You may want to tent the food with a piece of foil about 30 minutes into cooking to prevent too much charring. After the food has smoked for about 1.5 to 2 hours move the basket over the fire and cook until shrimp and fish are opaque about 4-5 minutes.
  3. If using a grill, place a few pieces of wood chips with water in a piece of foil or pie pan and place over direct heat on the grill. Allow it to heat for about 10-15 minutes, then place the grill basket on the side of the gill without the flames. Let the mixture cook for about 1 hour over the indirect heat and then move it over the flames to cook until shrimp and fish are opaque about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Serve over rice or quinoa and with a glass of either the Verveine Grenache, Sessi GSM or Mathis Rosé of Grenache to complete the meal!

Why these wines work?

Typically, with fish and veggies the first instinct is to uncork a white, but because of both the cooking method and complexity of flavors this recipe offers, it screams for a red wine or at least a rosé. The charring of foods caused from smoking/grilling complements the tannin in red wine and it is why it probably wouldn’t pair as well with a white wine that lacks tannin. A hint of tannin is needed and that’s why a rosé was chosen over a white wine.

If you add sausage to the recipe, then it can hold up to the Malbec or many of the fuller body reds.

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