Here’s a handy PDF version of this post, so you can print it: Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
I make large pots of this and the actual ingredients and amounts vary according to what I have and who I’m feeding. It freezes well if you do it without seafood. I often use gumbo as a leftover-user, tossing in leftover veggies, rice, meat, and so forth. Each batch I make is a little different from the previous; feel free to experiment.
This recipe is for a “fresh” batch and is not particularly quick to make, so allow a couple hours. It’s really good to make a day ahead and reheat, like chili. This recipe will feed 15-20 people – you will need a big stock pot.
Roux: In a large, heavy skillet, mix 2 cups flour with 1.5 cups vegetable oil. Cook while stirring constantly, until the roux reaches a peanut-butter / copper penny color. Don’t let it burn!! This will take about 20-30 minutes and the roux will be unbelievably hot, so be careful not to splash yourself.
Turn off heat.
Stir in the holy trinity: 1-2 medium onions, chopped
2-3 bell peppers, chopped. I use red and a yellow because I don’t like green ones. Plus, I like the color variety.
6-8 stalks of celery, chopped
Allow the residual heat from the roux to heat these veggies.
Meanwhile, in a large, heavy stew pot, mix together:
8 cups chicken stock (technically, you should make your own but canned works just fine)
2 large (28oz) cans of chopped tomatoes, undrained. Of course, you can use fresh tomatoes if you want.
1 bag of frozen okra, or use fresh when in season
1.5 – 2 pounds of Andouille sausage (aka ” Louisiana Hot Links”); sliced into bite-size pieces
Bring to simmer, then add the roux/veggie mixture, stirring well. Add liquid (water or chicken stock) if necessary; you want a stew-like consistency, not too soupy but not too thick.
In the heavy skillet (no need to wash it first):
6-8 cloves garlic, chopped or minced
roughly 2 pounds of chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
A bit of oil, if needed to keep it from sticking
Cook until no longer pink, then scrape contents into soup pot.
Season with “some” (amounts vary, start with 1 tsp each and go up as needed): thyme, basil, oregano, pepper, and cajun seasoning. I usually add some hot paprika too. If you like it really hot, you can add hot sauce or cayenne pepper. The sausage will leach spice into the gumbo, so don’t go overboard!
Simmer for one hour, stirring so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot.
If desired, add 1-2 pounds of seafood and cook additional 10-15 minutes before serving, no longer or the seafood will get chewy. Suggestions: shrimp, white fish (cod, tilapia), catfish, crab (no fake Krab!), crawdads, oysters, small clams, etc.
Re-season if needed. I add 4-5 tablespoons of parsley a few minutes before serving.
Serve with hot, white long-grain rice. The idea is that you put rice into your bowl and then ladle the gumbo over it. Enjoy!