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Gumbo

  • Preparation Time30 mins
  • Cooking Time150 mins
  • Serves10
  • DifficultyMedium

For the stock

1 tbsp oil
Heads and shells of 500g prawns (prawns to be used in gumbo)
3 medium blue crabs, live (about 60g)
2 bay leaves
1 head garlic, cut in 1/2
125g onion onion
35g celery, chopped
35g carrot, chopped
2 tbsp crab boil seasoning
1 tsp crushed red pepper
2 tbsp salt
For the stock:
1) Heat a tbsp of oil in a 5L pan and cook the prawn peels and heads until slightly toasted. Add the live crabs and cover the pot to steam for 5 minutes.

2) Add the rest of the stock ingredients except the water and sweat the vegetables. Add half the water and boil for half an hour. Add the remaining water, bring to a boil, and then lower heat and keep on a low boil for 1 1/2 hours.

For the roux:
1) While the stock is boiling, preheat the oven to 190C/Gas 5. In an oven-proof saucepan make the roux by heating up the oil, add the chicken and brown, then remove and place in a baking dish in the preheated oven.

2) Add the flour to the hot oil in the saucepan, being careful that the oil isn't too hot or the mixture will boil over. Cook until it begins to get lighter in colour, then put in the oven, stirring a few times until it turns mahogany brown.

For the gumbo:
1) While the stock is boiling and the roux is in the oven, start the gumbo. Add the oil to a large pan with the sausage and render the sausage a few minutes to extract the flavour and grease from them. Add the vegetables and set over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

2) In a small bowl mix the seasonings and add to the gumbo pot when the onions have turned transparent. Stir to release the flavourful oils, then add the tomato puree.

3) Take the chicken out of the oven and cool. Take the roux out of the oven and cool slightly before adding to the gumbo pan. Strain the stock then add the roux and mix well.

4) Add the diced tomatoes and half the stock and scrape the bottom of the pot well. Bring to a boil over medium heat and add more stock, as needed. After about 30 minutes, taste and correct seasonings, adding salt as needed.

5) Pull the chicken meat from the bones and chop to the desired size. Saute the prawns and any other fish you want and add to the gumbo with the okra. After simmering a few minutes the gumbo is ready serve - however it will taste better after resting several hours or until the next day.

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