Creole Red Beans and Rice

This inexpensive meal goes a long way. Not only can it be prepared stove top, but a slow cooker or even a pressure cooker works as well.

1 lb dry red kidney beans
3 quarts water
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 stalks celery, chopped
2 Tbsp salt
2 Tbsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp Creole seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
16 oz smoked sausage, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups water
1 Tbsp butter
1 cup uncooked converted brown rice

1. Pick over kidney beans, place into a large bowl, and pour in enough water to cover by several inches. Soak kidney beans overnight.
2. Drain kidney beans, transfer to a large soup pot, and cover with 3 quarts fresh water.
3. Stir in green bell pepper, onion, celery, salt, black pepper, Creole seasoning, and garlic.
4. Cover the pot, place over medium heat, and bring to a boil.
5. Reduce heat to low and simmer until beans are tender, about 4 hours.
6. Mix smoked sausage into the beans; cook an additional 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
7. About 30 minutes before serving time, place 2 cups water and margarine into a saucepan and bring to a boil.
8. Stir in rice, return to a boil, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover the pan and simmer until rice is tender and liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to stand covered for 5 minutes.
9. Serve red beans over cooked rice.