Friday, October 13, 2017

Seafood Gumbo


I jumped back into blogging last Monday night when I shared the tablesetting for Jewell's 15th birthday dinner. Then things got busy again! It's late Friday afternoon, and I'm sitting on the deck at the lake. It's been a beautiful day, and I've relaxed a little. We're having a cheer sleepover at the lake tonight since our game is so close (Lyman Ward Military Academy). Before I get ready to head out and cheer on the Knights, I thought I'd share my recipe for the mouthwatering gumbo you see above!


I'm not a huge fan of raw celery, and neither is my family. But it is integral flavoring for many foods, so I try to include it without advertising it to the kids. I have found that if I cut a stalk into three long pieces...  


and then cut it thinly on the bias...


not only is it prettier, it softens better and has a milder flavor. No one even notices it!


Excuse the up-side-down pic. I'm using my new HP Stream, and I'm not quite used to how to do everything yet. Point is - be sure and do all your prep work ahead of time. Here are my veggies - two stalks of celery, one red bell pepper, one large onion and about four cloves of minced garlic.


I love Conecuh brand sausage. We lived in Evergreen when I was little, and that's where it is made. I keep this in the freezer all the time. It is so easy to throw on the grill or brown in the oven or skillet. Such an easy pairing for toast and eggs. I used one pound of the original flavor of sausage. I cut it lengthwise and then into 1/4" half moons. Set aside.  


I thawed six chicken tenderloins ahead of time, then seasoned them with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder.


Add 1/4 cup of canola oil to a heavy bottomed Dutch oven. When it is hot, add chicken and brown on both sides. Remove chicken leaving oil.


See that pretty brown fond in the bottom? It's not burned. That's what makes it all taste so good!


Add the sausage to the oil and brown over medium heat. Remove sausage and keep oil.


Add half a cup of all purpose flour and two tablespoons of butter. Melt over medium heat, stirring constantly.


A whisk does a great job here.


Cook over medium heat STIRRING CONSTANTLY until it is a deep brown. Do not walk away. It will turn on you in an instant. Remove from heat and allow to cool. 

Some people literally spend all day cooking a roux. Ain't nobody got time for that! Tend this carefully for 8-10 minutes, and it will be fine. Your family will never know the difference. 


Once the roux is cooled, return to medium heat and melt three tablespoons of butter. Continue to stir so it doesn't burn.


Add celery, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Saute on medium low for about 10 minutes.


Add 1/4 cup of chopped fresh parsley and five beef bouillon cubes.


Add four cups of water and mix well. A whisk would be good to use here, too, to break up lumps.


Once the liquid is thoroughly mixed, add back the sausage and chicken. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and cook, covered, for 30 minutes.


Add a 14 ounce can of stewed tomatoes and a bag of frozen chopped okra. Return to boil, reduce to simmer and cook, covered, for 45 minutes. The last 15 minutes, I crack the cover so the gumbo can reduce a little and thicken up. You may need to use a couple of forks to shred the chicken, but it falls apart pretty easily.

During the last 30 minutes of cooking, I make my rice.

Five minutes before serving, add one pound of small peeled shrimp. Stir in well to mix. Cover and allow to cook on low for five minutes until shrimp are pink. Do not overcook.


Ladle into your favorite soup crock and serve!


We had green beans, roasted tomatoes, and cheddar and green onions corn muffins.


This was truly a taste of New Orleans! Jewell added a little (OK, a lot!) of hot sauce to hers, but that's just the way she rolls. I think it has tons of flavor without having to add heat. But have it your way...just make sure you have it soon!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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