Here are the ingredients:
- 2 large onions, diced
- 2 large bell peppers, diced
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup flour
- 2 14.5 oz. cans Italian stewed tomatoes
- 2 10 oz. packages frozen cut okra, thawed
- 2 quarts water
- 2 Tbsp. Tony Chacheres Creole Seasoning (Zatarain's works, too)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tsp. thyme
- 5 bay leaves
- 16 oz. Andouille or Conecuh Sausage, sliced
- 2 lbs. shrimp, peeled and deveined
Next, you'll make the roux. Be brave... this is the fun part. In a very large and thick bottomed stock pot, put the oil and flour in and turn on medium heat. (Photo at right is how it looks when you start.) You need a long-handled wooden spoon or long-handled sturdy whisk, as this gets extremely hot and there's no sense singing the hairs off your arm! You will stir this continuously, so be sure you will not be distracted during this step. Continue on medium heat until the roux is about the color of milk chocolate or a tarnished copper penny. You'll be tempted to turn up the heat to speed the process... trust me, don't! For me, on medium heat this takes around 20 minutes. Yes, I stir just about the entire time. Just think of it as working off the bowls of yumminess you'll be eating later. The mixture begins to get grainy toward the end, and particularly then you must not stop stirring. (Photo below is how it looks when it's ready for the next step.)
Once the mixture reaches the right color, it is time to add the diced veggies... peppers, onions, celery, and minced garlic. Dump them in and stir, stir, stir for about 5 minutes. At this point you're going to want to fumigate your house ...scented candles, fans, essential oils, whatever it takes.
Next add the 2 cans of tomatoes. Then add the okra.
Once you have added all that and stirred vigorously for a minute or two, it's time to add the 2 quarts of water. You can add less if you like a thicker gumbo, or more if you like thinner.
Next, add the Seasoning Mix, salt, pepper, thyme, and bay leaves.
Add the sausage, next, and simmer for around an hour.
Once you have simmered and the sausage is done, add the shrimp and cook for an addition 20-30 minutes.
You can cook white rice to go in the gumbo if you like it that way (most people do.) But, I like it without rice, like soup. You can add Tobasco, Texas Pete's, Frank's RedHot, or any favorite hot sauce, if you want it hotter.
And last, but certainly not least, dip a bowl for yourself and dig in!
I would love to know if you actually make this and what you think!