Chef Nino’s Pastalaya


2 pounds Rouses Smoked Sausage, cut into ½-inch rounds

2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 1/2 pounds onions, diced

1 stalk celery, finely diced

1 green bell pepper, finely diced

2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic

1 pound tasso, thinly cut

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried basil leaves

2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning

6 cups reduced sodium chicken stock

3 cups bow tie pasta

1/4 cup chopped green onion

2 tablespoons Italian flat parsley, chopped


In a large Dutch oven, brown sausage over medium high heat, stirring constantly so that it does not burn, about 10 minutes. Drain off excess fat. Add the thigh meat to the sausage and cook, stirring constantly, until chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Lower the heat to medium and add the onions celery, bell pepper and garlic to the pot and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, 6 to 7 minutes. Scrape the bottom of the pot to keep the vegetables sticking.

Add the tasso, thyme, basil and Cajun seasoning and cook until tasso is lightly browned, about 5 minutes

Add the chicken stock. Bring mixture to a boil. Stir in the pasta — this will keep it from sticking to the bottom. After mixture returns to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook until pasta is al dente, about 20 minutes. If you are looking you ain’t cooking….don’t remove the lid and don’t stir while cooking. Add green onions and parsley before serving.