Note from Sabrina : Gumbo is one of my favourite dishes to share with family and friends. I first learnt to make this amazing soup stew like dish when I lived in New Orleans. My Dad still remembers the first time I made him Gumbo and still talks about that amazing flavour medley he experienced.
Simply put is Louisiana in a bowl. Its considered a culinary mystery by some due to its complex flavours which come from marrying of several cuisines including native American, African, Caribbean, Spanish and French.
Each household and restaurant has their own take on making a Gumbo which makes it such a special dish however all varieties of gumbo are made with the Holy Trinity consisting of celery, bell pepper and onions. File powder made from ground sassafras leaves used by Native Americans for centuries is used to thicken the gumbo. Okra introduced by the African slaves is also used to thicken the gumbo. I rarely make a gumbo without okra as it is so nutritious and delicious.
On a simple gumbo I will use chicken thighs and smoked sausage. When I am entertaining I add crab claw meat and prawns.
Ideally you serve gumbo over rice however there have been time when we have eaten it just as a soup. Another serving suggestion is over pasta… yum!
- 500 g deboned chicken thighs cubed
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp white pepper
- 2 tsp thyme
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp sweet basil
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 150 g smoked polish sausage sliced
- 150 g onions chopped
- 150 g green bell pepper chopped
- 150 g celery chopped
- 150 g okra sliced
- 75 g flour
- 3 Tbsp oil
- Mix spices together. Season chicken with 1 tsp seasoning mix. In heavy skillet heat oil on high heat. Whisk in flour to make roux. Continue whisking until medium to dark brown colour. Add onions, celery, bell pepper and okra. Fry for two minutes, reduce heat to medium. Add chicken when vegetables are tender and cook for 5 minutes. Add half stock and seasoning mix. Add sausage. Simmer uncovered for 45 minutes. Add green onions before serving. Serve on a bed of rice.
- Louisiana in a bowl!