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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I Am Ashamed

It was with great distress that I realized my embarrassing error last night... the fact that I never cooked any Gulf Coast food while living down there!

I really have no good explanation for this.  None.

I love to cook.  I love food.  I love experimenting.  I love the Gulf Coast.  I love *their* food...  somehow I just never thought, "Hey, how 'bout some gumbo?"

Gumbo!  My sisters came home from Christmas break and embarked on an adventure in gumbo making.  And they did such a splendid job that my family raved about it... so I made them cook me some!  (And teach me how... making a good roux isn't easy, let me tell you what!) 

Here's the recipe we used:

(If you can't find andouille, use smoked sausage or keilbasa)

1 C oil
1 C flour
2 large onions, chopped
2 bell peppers, chopped
4 ribs celery, chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
4 quarts chicken stock
2 bay leaves
2 tsp Creole seasoning (or to taste)
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
salt and pepper to taste
chicken, cut small (we used about 2 lbs)
andouille sausage, cut small (again, about 2 lbs)
1 bunch scallions, tops only, chopped
2/3 C fresh chopped pasley

We also threw in some chopped shrimp :o)

Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and Creole seasoning and brown in a skillet.  Brown the sausage.  Pour off fat and reserve meats.
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium to high heat (depending on your roux-making skill) and cook the flour, stirring constantly, until the roux reaches a dark reddish-brown color... almost the color of coffee or milk chocolate for a Cajun-style roux.  If you want to save time, or prefer a more new Orleans-style roux, cook it to a medium, peanut-butter color... over low heat if you're nervous about burning it (like we were!).
Add the vegetables and stir quickly.  This cooks the veggies and stops the roux fromo cooking further.
Continue to cook, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes.
Add the stock, seasonings, chicken and sausage.
Bring to a boil, cook for an hour.
Add the chopped scallion tops and parsley during the last five minutes.
Serve over rice with some hot, crispy French bread :o)


  1. while the gumbo looks and i'm sure tasted delish- "i am ashamed" coming from, an at the time - pregnant, mother of one 'stranger dangered' toddler, wife to a pretty much other-occupied husband, cook of 95,000 meals in preparation of baby 2, laundress of zounds of clothing and diapers, protector and defender against all things bugzilla ... and well I could go on but think you get the point! and if you cooked Gulf Coast food extraordinaire (which we know you would), what would we need The Shed for, I ask?