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Cajun Food
Classic Gumbo

INGREDIENTS

3 to 4 chickens, approximately 8 1/2 pounds, rinsed well and patted dry
3 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups yellow onions, chopped
3 cups green bell peppers, chopped
3 cups celery, chopped
3 tablespoons garlic, minced
3 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 pound andouille sausage, cut into 1/8-inch thick half circles
3 quarts chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth
3 cups crimini mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 tablespoon Creole seasoning
File powder to taste
1/4 cup green onions (green part only), thinly sliced
 

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Season all sides of chicken with salt and pepper and roast on a baking sheet for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until cooked through and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle. Remove and discard the skin and fat. Remove the meat from the bones, coarsely chop, and chill, covered, for up to 2 days. Reserve the bones for making stock.

Make roux by heating oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium high heat until hot and shimmering. Gradually add flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, and cook until mahogany in color. Add the onions, peppers, celery, thyme, garlic, bay leaves, and sauté for 10 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the reserved chicken meat and andouille.

Gradually whisk in stock, in a steady stream to prevent lumps, and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 1 hour, frequently skimming away any foam that rises to the surface. Stir in the mushrooms, Worcestershire, Tabasco and Creole seasoning. Remove from the heat and discard the bay leaves. Gumbo can be made 3 days in advance or covered, chilled, and frozen up to 1 month.

Ladle the gumbo into large shallow bowls and sprinkle about 1/4-teaspoon of file over each bowl. Garnish with the green onions.

 

 Makes 3 1/2 quarts; serves 10 as a main course


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