Showing posts with label Gumbo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gumbo. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Chicken, Andouille, and Oyster Filé Gumbo

An oyster filé gumbo, made with the Trinity, oysters, a chicken and spicy andouille sausage.

Chicken, Andouille, and Oyster Filé Gumbo

My father-in-law has been buying full sacks of Gulf oysters the past few weeks and we have been the lucky recipients of several pints, stuffed with delicious, salty, freshly shucked oysters and plenty of liquor. Dad also makes this wonderful oyster gumbo and he usually sends a quart of that over too. I know. My in-laws are wonderful people, I love them to death, and yes. I am spoiled rotten.

Dad's gumbo is more of a filé gumbo because he doesn't use okra in his gumbo, though I've seen some recipes that do. His oyster gumbo is also made with a pale roux, always spicy andouille sausage, plenty of cayenne and no tomatoes.

Gumbo Filé (pronounced fee-lay) is used to both season and thicken gumbo, particularly when okra is not used. It is ground from dried leaves of a sassafras tree and is offered as a condiment at the table, or added only at the end of the cooking process, but should never be boiled. The flavor is somewhere around the taste of a cross between savory and thyme.


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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Crab and Shrimp Gumbo

A bowl of Deep South goodness, this gumbo is seasoned with small crab bodies and then topped off with crabmeat and shrimp.

Crab and Shrimp Gumbo

Like chili, I'm always piddling around with my seafood gumbo recipes, trying to reach that one perfect gumbo my mama used to make. For this crab heavy version, I decided to use a little more onion, bump up the okra to a full pound, and not take my roux quite as dark. I thought for a sweet, crab-based gumbo, this more mellow roux would be a bit more fitting, than the richer, dark and more full bodied roux I often use.


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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Seven Steak Gumbo

A gumbo of beef, made with a 7-steak, and cooked down with The Trinity trio, okra, and a little bit of chopped tasso for some heat.

Seven Steak Gumbo

As far as I can discern, 7 steak gumbo had to have been born out of frugality. Unlike its more pricey seafood cousin, it is a gumbo of beef and okra, but of a fairly inexpensive cut of beef, similar to round steak. Seven steak requires slow braising or stewing in order to bring out it's delicious, tender flavor, making it a suitable candidate for a gumbo. It's called 7 steak because of the bone in it that is shaped like the number 7, when you can find it where the butcher hasn't removed it already, that is. I fix it most often as a Cajun smothered steak, but it can be used pretty much anywhere that you would use a braising steak.


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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Green Gumbo - Gumbo Z'herbes

A traditional gumbo made of multiple greens, and sometimes meatless on Fridays during Lent, but more often now made with an abundance of a wide variety of meats to be served on Holy Thursday before Easter..

Gumbo Z'herbes

Gumbo aux Herbes, better known as Gumbo Z'herbes, or just simply Green Gumbo, is a traditional Lenten dish here in The Deep South. I feel certain that its origins were based on a completely meatless gumbo, and while it is sometimes still served meatless during fasting Fridays of Lent, it is more often served with an over-abundance of meat, and most traditionally on Holy Thursday, the Thursday before Easter.  Frankly, while I do adore greens, I am much more fond of Gumbo Z'herbes flavored with the meats.


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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo with Microwave Roux

A gumbo made with a dark roux, a rich shrimp stock, the Trinity of vegetables, okra, shrimp and andouille sausage, shown here served with a scoop of hot rice and a scoop of Gumbo Potato Salad.

Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo with Microwave Roux

Yes, it's another shrimp gumbo, but... what sets this one apart is that it was a "hurry up" gumbo, made with my microwave roux - pushed just a little bit further than usual - and pretty much, mostly ingredients that were straight out of the freezer!

The shrimp were frozen. The shrimp stock I had made and put up in the freezer. You can also substitute commercial seafood or chicken broth, of course. Smoked sausage is also a freezer staple I always have on hand and can be quickly thawed in the microwave. I had even actually run completely out of onion when I decided to make this gumbo - can you imagine? No worries. I always keep extra chopped onion in the freezer.

Tip: When a recipe calls for chopped onion, go ahead and chop the entire onion and bag what you don't use in a zippered freezer bag.  Same with the bell pepper. Didn't have any fresh, but I always keep quartered bell pepper in the freezer - problem solved. And, of course, the okra was also frozen.

Y'all, I promise, utilize your freezer and a microwave roux, and this is a gumbo that you can actually pull together in a flash. Gotta love that.


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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Turkey Bone Thanksgiving Gumbo - Turkey Carcass Gumbo

A delicious gumbo made from the carcass of the holiday turkey.

Turkey Bone Thanksgiving Gumbo

Turkey bone gumbo, Thanksgiving gumbo or Turkey Carcass Gumbo - no matter the name you use, it is a great way to transform at least one of your Thanksgiving leftovers into a whole 'nother meal, by extracting every ounce of flavor from that holiday bird. While everybody is busy traveling and gathering for the big feast on Thanksgiving, I wanted to remind you not to toss that turkey carcass after your Thanksgiving feast!

And by the way, once all the feasting is over, pop back by here and check out my list of Thanksgiving leftover recipes too. You're bound to find something to transform those leftovers into something else your family will be happy to gobble down.

You can use the carcass to make an incredible tasting stock for turkey noodle soup, or for this delicious gumbo. Once you've carved up the bird, simply break the carcass up, stick it in a container and hold it in the fridge until you are ready. You can also freeze the carcass if you want to wait, but just don't toss it - you've got another meal waiting there!

The smell of this stock simmering is amazing - smells like the turkey is roasting all over again I swear! And the stock makes a beautiful base for this gumbo. Once you've cooked the stock, you'll strain it out from all of the bones and vegetables - make sure you're straining it into another pot though and not down the drain though! {Ask me why I tell you this.} Toss all of those bones, veggies and any stray meat scraps. They have done their job and all of the flavor has been extracted from them - so don't be tempted to use any of that meat or vegetables in your gumbo.

As always with any gumbo, practice mise en place y'all, meaning make sure that before you start cooking, you have everything gathered up and in one place. Chop up all of veggies for The Trinity, and have all of your seasonings, measuring spoons and cups at hand and ready to use. The roux waits for nobody, so have everything ready to go! Make your roux fresh on the stove-top if you prefer, or save yourself a little time by making an oven roux ahead of time, or simply use your microwave. Doesn't matter one bit.


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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

A delicious and easy gumbo made with a roux, the Trinity of vegetables and using a whole chicken and andouille sausage.

Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

I've talked before about being a big fan of Miss Lucy H. Zaunbrecher's show, Classic Cajun Culture & Cooking and her Louisiana recipes. It comes on PBS stations generally, but I've caught her on the RFD-TV station too. I just let the DVR catch her show whenever she is on.

Her recipe is a little different method from how I usually do a gumbo, but I tried to stay pretty true to it, substituting thighs in place of the whole chicken, just because that is what I happened to have in my freezer. I cooked my roux to a medium dark - like the color of a dark copper penny - but you could also take this one darker. My dark oven roux would work well here too.


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Monday, October 12, 2009

Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo with Okra

A traditional roux and tomato based gumbo made with shrimp, spicy andouille sausage and okra. Pass hot sauce at the table, add some hot, buttered French bread and a side salad to round it out.

Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo with Okra

Delish. But, admittedly, homemade gumbo can take a bit of time between planning and preparing, though there are ways that you can save some time and make it an easier process when you get in the mood for gumbo. Next time you are chopping an onion, go ahead and chop an extra one or two and bag it in a zipper freezer bag.  When you make rice for one dinner, double up on it and then bag and freeze half. All it needs is a sprinkle of water, cover and microwave to freshen it up. For okra, pre-sliced frozen okra works fantastic.

And if you don't have in-shell shrimp or just don't feel up to making a stock from the shrimp shells, next time you bake a whole chicken, save the carcass and make homemade stock, cool it and bag it in freezer bags by 1 or 2 cup measurements. Chicken stock works great for gumbo, as does plain ole water.

When I do a recipe that requires a caramel or lighter roux, I cook my roux on the stovetop or in the microwave, and that is definitely a time saver. But I like my seafood gumbo to be rich and dark - think Mary Mahoney's or McElroy's if you're from around here - and frankly to accomplish that on the stovetop is just too time consuming for me. Plus I have a short attention span. Plus I always get burned.

One of the biggest time savers I use now for making gumbo is pre-made, refrigerated dark roux - yes, just like you see on the grocery store shelf - and you can certainly use those here too. But I'm talking about making your own dark roux ahead, right in your own kitchen, and then storing it in your fridge. And, get this. You make it in your oven. Yes! It really does work. The oven method works fantastic, you don't have to keep standing over a pot of hot oil and stir your arm off, and you can make up a big batch and store it in your fridge. If you like to make up a pot of gumbo frequently, whether it be seafood or chicken, try the oven method sometime to put up your own roux, you will love it!


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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Seafood and Okra Gumbo with Shrimp, Crab and Oysters

A seafood gumbo made with a dark roux, a rich shrimp stock, the Trinity of vegetables, tomatoes, andouille and shrimp, crab and oysters.

Seafood and Okra Gumbo

Seafood gumbo, made with shrimp, lots of crab, and usually oysters is definitely a Deep South tradition for Christmas. Mama always made her seafood gumbo on Christmas Eve and that was a tradition at our house. We had this yesterday (and of course it only gets better the day after) and oh my gosh ... this is so dang good (if I don't say so myself) I can't begin to tell y'all!


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