I remember going on trips to New Orleans with my parents when I was a child. I will never forget going to a very authentic Cajun restaurant near Bourbon Street. Since the place did not have a child's menu, my parents ordered me a bowl of gumbo. I looked in horror and in disbelief at the large crab claws, oysters and shrimp shells floating around in my bowl. My dinner looked like it was going to make a run for it back to the sea. Now days I would give anything for a wonderful seafood filled bowl of gumbo. It is hard to beat Cajun cuisine. From the sauces, fresh seafood, étouffées, jambalayas and beignets, I love it all.
Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 stalks celery, finely diced
1/4 green bell pepper, finely diced
1 pound fresh Gulf shrimp, peeled
1 -2 andouille sausage, cooked and sliced
1 cup white rice cooked according to directions
1 Tablespoon Gumbo File
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon Tabasco
1 cup of canned diced tomatoes
3-4 green chives or onions sliced for garnish
1 container chicken broth
1 container fresh okra, sliced
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 cup flour
4 tablespoons olive oil or canola oil
Heat oil in a cast iron skillet on medium low heat. Slowly add in flour. Stir constantly until roux is a caramel color. If the roux starts to stick to the pan add more oil. For a thicker gumbo, add more flour.
Heat olive oil in a dutch oven or large soup pot. Add garlic, onions, celery and bell pepper. Saute until tender. Add gumbo file, thyme, Tabasco and salt and pepper. Pour in chicken broth and tomatoes. Bring to a boil. In a small bowl, ladle out 1 cup of the hot broth. Slowly incorporate the cooked roux. Pour back into the pot. Turn down to a simmer. Add shrimp and sausage. Cook 30 to 45 minutes. Serve with cooked white rice. Garnish with gumbo file and green onions.