- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Emeril's Original Essence or other Creole seasoning
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
- 1 pound smoked sausage, preferably andouille, sliced crosswise
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped bell pepper
- 1/2 bunch green onions, thinly sliced, white and green portions reserved separately
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 4 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth
- One 14.5 ounce can petite diced tomatoes, with juices
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 cups long grain converted rice
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
In a mixing bowl, combine the chicken, Essence, and 1 teaspoon of the salt and toss to coat.
Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet and when hot, saute the chicken pieces until golden on both sides, about 4 minutes. Transfer chicken to crock of a 6-quart slow cooker.
To the hot skillet, add the sausage and cook briefly to brown on both sides, then transfer sausage to the slow cooker.
Add the onion, celery, and bell pepper to the hot skillet, season with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and saute until soft and lightly golden, about 4 minutes. Add the white (bottom) portion of the green onions, the garlic, cayenne, crushed red pepper, and black pepper and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Add the sauteed vegetables to the slow cooker along with the chicken stock, tomatoes (with juices), thyme, and bay leaves. Cover and cook on high until the chicken is very tender, about 3 hours.
Taste the broth and adjust the seasoning if necessary, Keep in mind that it should be highly seasoned since it will be flavoring the rice.
Stir in the rice, green onion tops, and parsley. Cover and cook on high, stirring every 15 minutes, until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid, 30 to 45 minutes.
Fluff with a fork, remove the bay leaves, and serve hot.