Tag Archives: roux

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

In South Louisiana, everyone and their mama has a secret family recipe for gumbo. This is my family’s recipe. Gumbo is a veritable one-pot wonder, and has its origins in Choctaw, African, Cajun, and Creole traditions (to name a few). It can be thickened with okra, roux, or gumbo file powder; I personally use all three. While this recipe uses chicken and andouille sausage, you can use any variety of proteins: shrimp, oysters, crabs, tasso. Be warned: this is an all-day process. On football game days, we wake up early and cook it, then bring it to the tailgate. I would encourage everyone to set aside a day to try their hand at making gumbo. It’s hard work that proves worthwhile.

Ingredients:

  • One whole chicken (can be bought as a pre-cooked rotisserie)
  • 4 links andouille sausage
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 7 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bag (16 oz) frozen okra
  • 1 can Rotel tomatoes 
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 4-5 Tbs. flour
  • 2 Tbs. Tony Chachere’s Seasoning
  • 2 tsp. red pepper
  • 2 Tbs. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbs. onion powder
  • 2 tsp. file powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 cups rice
    Makes 8-10 servings.

If you are opting to roast your own whole chicken, prepare this beforehand and let cool. As gumbo is a labor-intensive process to begin with, I usually buy a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken. Remove the bones, cartilage, skin, and any fat and put it all in a pot. Shred the white and dark meat into bite sized pieces.

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In the pot with the inedible chicken parts, fill it almost full with water. Set on the stove top and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for at least one hour to make the broth. When done, strain the broth into a clean pot.

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Meanwhile, saute or grill the andouille sausage, then cut into bite size pieces.

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Now time for the roux – this is a butter and flour mixture, cooked until dark, that serves as the base and thickener for the gumbo. Melt half a stick of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle 4-5 tablespoons of flour into the butter, and whisk or stir with a wooden spoon.

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Don’t leave the stove for 15-20 minutes. Constantly stir the mixture so that the flour doesn’t burn. By 20 minutes, the roux should be the color of brick red-brown.

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Add the bell pepper and onion to the roux, and mix well. Saute for 7-8 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for an additional 2 minutes.

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Remove vegetables from pan and set aside. Melt another half-stick of butter in the skillet. Add the okra, still frozen, and cover. Every few minutes, stir. It will be very gooey and gummy.

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After 10-15 minutes, once most of the gumminess is gone, add the can of Rotel tomatoes and cook for 5-10 more minutes.

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Now assemble everything – roux/onion mixture, okra and tomatoes, sausage, and chicken – into the pot with the broth. Add all of the spices. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook for at least 1-2 hours, up to all day long. The longer it cooks, the more nuanced the flavors.

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Serve over rice.

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If you’re doing it right, you should see some variation of this:

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From my family’s kitchen to yours – enjoy!