Oh Cajun loves come this way!
I love Cajun food, and this is pretty darn good.
This recipe comes from Simply Recipes and I changed very little. I thought it was perfect.
For those of you who hate to spend extra for somebody else to mix your spices and herbs, then listen up too for the Cajun spice mix which is simple but perfect and can be used for other things as well.
Do try to get fresh Andouille sausage. It’s so much better than any of the commercially packaged kinds, but of course availability does depend on location.
For instance I can’t really get much fresh okra here or at least I haven’t seen it, so I used frozen, which I don’t think changes the taste at all.
- 1/3 lb bacon, diced
- 2-3 lbs of chicken thighs, skin on
- 1-2 lbs andouille sausage
- 1/2 canola oil
- 1 c flour
- 2 medium green peppers, diced
- 4 celery stalks, diced
- 1 lg onion, diced
- 4 gloves garlic, microplaned or minced
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 qt of chicken stock (unsalted preferred)
- 1 qt of water or as needed to get the consistency you desire
- 1/2 – 1 lb of okra, or 1-2 cups frozen
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 1/2 c fresh parsley, chopped
- Approx. 3 tbsp of Cajun spice mix (store-bought or home-made–as much as you wish)
- Cook the bacon until crisp in a large stew pot (Cast iron would be perfect). Remove the bacon and set aside.
- Set the thighs skin down and brown well. Salt the meat while it is cooking. Don’t move the chicken for a good 4-5 minutes. It tends to release and turn easily once the skin is nicely browned. Turn and brown the other side.
- Remove the chicken. Brown the sausage. Roll as needed to brown all sides decently. Remove this to the chicken.
- You need about 1/2 c of fat from all this. If you don’t have enough, use the canola oil up to that level. This isn’t rocket science, just be in the ball park. Once heated up, stir in the flour and stir. At first stir almost continuously, then every couple of minutes. Turn to low-medium heat and cook until the roux is a dark caramel. This will take about 30 minutes. Don’t let it burn, cuz if you do, it’s a complete loss. So watch carefully.
- You can warm the chicken stock and water in the microwave, but it’s not essential. It makes everything blend a little faster is all.
- Add the veggies all nicely diced to the roux when it is ready and stir often for about 5 minutes until they are softened. Add the garlic, and continue cooking and stirring for about 2 more minutes. Add the tomato paste and whisk into the roux and veggie mix.
- Slowly pour in the chicken stock, whisking it in a bit at a time until you have it all in. Continue to scrap the bottom of the pot, and whisking away.
- Stir in 3 tbsp of the Cajun spice mix, taste, and add more in you desire.
- Add the thighs back in. Simmer for 90 minutes. Remove the chicken, let cool.
- While chicken is cooling, cut the sausage into discs and add to the gumbo. Then add the okra. You can cook this for 1 hour or if you wish, longer to cook down the soup. It’s your call as to how thick you want things. If it’s too thick for you now, add water or more stock.
- Pick the meat off the chicken bones and chop and add back in.
- Add the green onions, parsley and bacon back in at the very end before serving.
- Serve over rice or with bread.
Note: This makes a big pot, but this freezes really well. I thought it was better after it came out of the freezer frankly.
- imabonehead: Chicken, Andouille, and Shrimp Gumbo (simplecomfortfood.com)
- Auntie Em’s Famous Gumbo (auntieemsguide.wordpress.com)
- Esquire’s Traditional Holiday Gumbo (esquire.com)
- City Kitchen: Pursuing a Legendary Gumbo (nytimes.com)
- Making a Great Gumbo (billives.typepad.com)