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Red Beans and Rice

When I make Red Beans & Rice they always look pale in color and not like the photo attached. This picture is from Cafe Zydeco in Bozeman MT. Any ideas on getting the deeper color. I don't think it is roux, but I don't really know for sure. Any suggestions are appreciated.
Zydeco's are tasty.

 
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  1. add in about 6oz of tomato sauce to your recipe for the color (if cooking 1lb of beans).

    1 Reply
    1. re: outsidein

      Also perhaps more Cajun seasoning, such as Zatarain's -- or if that would make it too spicy for you, a teaspoon or so of very mild chile powder, or a little mild paprika.

    2. Does their red beans and rice have sausage in it? I think it may be from the sausage. I use a good cajun spicy sausage in mine and it colors up well.

      1. from my NOLA friend, she says traditionally, some of the beans are pureed and added in to supplement the creamy roux...

        definately some tomato paste...

        and also the smoked sausage would likely contribute some of its color, from paprika, etc

        1. Aside from looks, and more importantly, does YOUR pale red beans and rice taste good?

          I think that's the most important thing, no?

          1. I have to add my 2 cents here . . . I have never seen a red bean and rice recipe that used tomato sauce, paste or any other forms of tomatoes. If you use red beans and a red sausage, some paprika, cayenne or cajun seasonings it should get redder. But as ipsedixit said, if you like the flavor, don't sweat the coloring.

            1 Reply
            1. re: danhole

              the beuty of any creole cooking...from latino to NOLA...its differs from kitchen to kitchen