I found this treasure of a recipe in Rachael Ray's magazine "Everyday". Original recipe called for lamb sausage and a pinch of saffron (I wasn't spending $17 for a pinch of anything). Seriously you have to try this recipe. So yummy.
Red Beans & Rice with Lamb & Eggplant
2 T butter
1 1/2 tsp. paprika
1 1/4 c long grain and wild rice
2 c chicken stock
1 tomato chopped (I used a can of diced tomatoes)
salt and pepper
2 T olive oil
1 lb ground lamb
1 small firm eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 T chopped fresh thyme
1/2 c dry white wine
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
chopped fresh parsley for garnish
In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat until foaming; stir in the paprika. Add the rice and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the stock and tomato; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to low, cover and simmer for 18 minutes.
Meanwhile in a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Crumble in the sausage and cook until browned, about 8 minutes. Add the eggplant, onion, garlic, bell pepper, and thyme; season with salt and pepper. Partially cover and cook for 10 minutes. Pour in the wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up the browned bits. Stir in the beans to heat through and then stir in the rice. Top with parsley.