1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 stick unsalted butter

1 large green bell pepper, cut into thin strips

1 large red bell pepper, cut into thin strips

1 large orange bell pepper, cut into thin strips

2 large Portabella mushrooms, medium diced

1 medium onion, finely diced

4 fresh garlic cloves, minced

2 ribs celery, finely diced

2 whole bay leaves

6 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped

10 ears fresh corn on the cob, stripped

3 cans creamed corn

3 tsp. Frank Davis Vegetable Seasoning

1 very large over-ripe tomato, peeled and finely diced

1 can crushed tomatoes, 16-oz. size

1 can stewed tomatoes, 16-oz. size

1 can Rotel Tomatoes with Chilies, 10-1/2 oz. size

2 cups low-salt chicken broth, as needed

1 cup pre-boiled pickled meat, finely diced

2 lbs. smoked sausage, skinless and low salt

12-oz. center-cut bacon, cut into small pieces

Salt and black pepper to taste

1/2 bunch green onions, thinly sliced

1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped

6-8 cups cooked long-grain rice

First, in a large 5-quart oval roaster or Dutch oven combine the olive oil and the butter and bring it up to a sizzle. Then drop in the veggies green, red, and orange bell peppers, mushrooms, onions, garlic, and celery.

This is also a good time to drop in the bay leaves and the fresh basil. Once everything is in the pot, stir, stir, and stir some more until all the ingredients are uniformly blended.

At that point, continue to cook the mixture over medium-high heat until everything wilts and softens.

Next, it's time to add to the pot the fresh corn cut from the cobs, the creamed corn, the vegetable seasoning, all the tomatoes, and one third of the chicken broth.

When all of those items have been combined (remembering that the heat is still on medium-high), fold in the pickled meat, the smoked sausage (cut into serving size pieces), and the bacon.

Then bring the liquids in the pot to a gentle boil; but immediately reduce the heat to a slow simmer (if additional chicken broth is needed at this stage simply add it to the mixture to create a 'stew').

At that point, cover the pot with a tight fitting lid and let the corn stew 'stew down' slowly and gently (about 30 minutes should produce the desired results).

All that's left now is to re-season the corn 'to taste' with the salt and black pepper and to quickly stir in the thinly sliced green onions.

Finally, give the dish another five minutes to marry and it's ready to ladle over big bowls of steaming hot rice. Garnish them each with a pinch or two of minced parsley.


Chef's Notes:

If you'd prefer to saute the mushrooms and the bacon pieces prior to adding them to the pot, go right ahead. Pre-sauteing will not only change the texture of the finished dish it will also enhance the final taste.

After cutting the kernels off the corncobs, be sure to use the spine of the knife (or a heavy tablespoon) and scrape the cobs yet again to get all of the 'corn milk.' If you want to avoid the task of stripping the corncobs, an equivalent amount of frozen corn kernels may be substituted for the corn on the cob, but the corn on the cob produces a richer flavor and texture.

Heart and blood pressure patients may substitute my No-Salt Seasoning in place of the Vegetable Seasoning and the salt and black pepper to taste. Both Promise or Smart Balance margarine may be used instead of the butter.

Two pounds of andouille sausage can be substituted for the smoked sausage, 1 cup diced tasso may be substituted for the bacon, and 1 pound of lean ham may be substituted for the pickled meat if desired.

To make preparing the dish even easier, Instant Minute Rice may be used instead of regular or par-boiled long-grain rice.