This is my uncle Willie’s recipe. He’s from Mississippi but has a love for everything New Orleans. I would watch him make this dish over the holidays, so this is my memory of watching Willie all those years. And great rice? I will show you the best trick for cooking it!
Generously coat the bottom of a large, heavy-bottom saucepan with oil. Add the onion and cook until it begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the bell pepper and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften and the onions are translucent.
Add the garlic, smoked paprika, cayenne, oregano, basil, thyme, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Add the beans, ham hock and broth and simmer, partially covered, for 1 hour.
Remove the ham hock from the pan but let the beans continue to cook. When the hock is cool enough to handle, take the meat off the bone, chop it into bite-size pieces and return it to the pan.
Add the rice to the pan along with 1 cup water if more liquid is needed. Cook, tightly covered, until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Serve in bowls garnished with parsley.