No Dirty South cookbook would be complete without a jambalaya recipe. I'd been planning an eggplant jambalaya recipe in my head for ages, but I finally got around to bringing that idea to fruition this week. Bam! I bring you Eggplant and Creole Sausage Jambalaya:

Sauteed eggplant (sans the skin, but you can leave it on if you're into that sort of thing) meets spicy creole-flavored steamed sausages, brown rice, fresh veggies, tomatoes, and plenty of heat. The sausages were inspired by the Julie Hasson method of steaming sausages, but I came up with my own New Orleans-inspired flavor combo. They're also a little softer than the Julie sausages, which is nice since these are sliced and pan-fried.

I served my jambalaya with Roasted Okra Pods:

I have to think Erin of Vegan Homemade for introducing me to this technique of roasting whole okra brushed with a little olive oil and salt. I've always fried it or boiled it in soups and stews. But this preparation was equally delicious. Thanks Erin! Oh, and thanks Melinda (my co-worker) for gifting me with fresh okra from her garden.