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Peel shrimp and place the retained shrimp shells in a
small pot. Devein the shrimp and place in a bowl. Cover with
a wet paper towel and store in the refrigerator until
needed. Add enough water to the pot to just cover the
shells, usually about 1 cup. Cover and simmer slowly over
low heat without boiling for 20 to 30 minutes. Strain out
the liquid, set aside to cool, and use as shrimp stock in
the recipe. Discard the shells.
Wash chicken thighs and pat dry. Sprinkle all sides of
the chicken with cayenne pepper. Heat the canola oil in a
large Dutch oven over medium heat. Sear the chicken thighs 4
minutes each side; remove to a plate. Add the sliced sausage
and cook until browned, about 3 minutes. Remove to the plate
with the chicken and set aside.
Add the yellow onions, green pepper and celery to the now
empty Dutch oven and sauté until the vegetables start to
soften, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until
fragrant, about 1 minute, then add the thyme. Stir in the
rice and cook for about 1 minute being sure to coat all of
the rice grains. Crush tomatoes in a medium bowl, retaining
juice, and stir into the pot. Add the clam juice, shrimp
stock and bay leaves; stir well.
Position the resting chicken and sausage evenly in the
pot. Pour in any juices that may have accumulated on the
plate. Without stirring, bring the mixture to a boil. Add
the lid to the pot; turn the heat down to low and allow to
simmer, undisturbed, for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes,
quickly arrange the shrimp evenly in the pot without
disturbing the rice. Replace the lid and continue cooking on
low for 15 more minutes. Remove from heat. With a fork,
gently fluff the rice while adding the green onions and hot
sauce. Serve up and enjoy!