Author Topic: Chicken and Andouille gumbo  (Read 870 times)

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Offline jerseybud

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Chicken and Andouille gumbo
« on: February 23, 2012, 08:55:22 pm »
This is a recipe I learned in Baton Rouge.  Its the thick style like a stew, not the thin style. This dish turns out different every time I make it.  Eliminate the peppers and garlic for a smoother flavor that has slightly less bitterness. Do NOT use Johnsonville brand andouille.  It is disgusting.

What you need:
-Cast iron frying pan about 14 inches ( if not use the thickest bottom aluminum pan you can find- NO teflon)
-Flat edge metal or wood spatula
-Large (2-3 gallon) pot

-1 large or 2 small yellow onions
-About 1/3 of a red pepper
-About 1/3 of a large green pepper
-About 3-4 inches of a stick of celery- any more makes it bitter
-3 Bay leaves
-thyme (optional)
-3-4 shakes of REAL tabasco
-1 liter plus of Chicken stock (store bought or make your own.  See notes on chicken preference)
-1 small tomato (optional)
-3 cloves of garlic (optional)
-A 1/2 palmful of finely chopped parsley (optional)- may make bitter as well
-7/8 cup flour
-7/8 cup peanut oil or fat of preference (a little duck or bacon fat added to the peanut oil is pretty good, but more smoky)
-Okra to taste if desired and you can find it
-File (fee-yay) if desired and you can find it.- very optional
-About 2-3 links of andouille sausage depending on manufacturer- using kielbasa is a foolish mistake.  Its way too strong.  I can get andouille here in Maine at Shaws so look hard.  If you still can't find it, a mild pork breakfast sausage is a possibility.  I've tried Mailhots but its not the same as Andouille- too much fat and too bland.  There are at least 3 companies in Louisiana that make it and will ship it and I strongly recommend that.  There is a company in New Jersey that makes it as well and its horrible- loaded with chili powder.
-About 1+ lb or more of chicken or duck.  I've used a baked chicken and chicken breast.  Traditionally people like baked chicken because of the extra flavor and the flavor from the bones.  Then they use the carcass and boil it down to make the stock.  The problem is it takes lots of time.  I usually use about 1 lb of thin cut breast, cube it and chuck it in the pot raw (time is money).  The taste from a baked chicken cannot be beat.

1.  Cut up the peppers, celery and onions and put in a bowl off to the side
2. Cut the tomato, parsley and garlic.  Put in separate bowl.
3. Cut the chicken and sausage.  Put in a  3rd bowl
4. In the pot, put the chicken stock, bay leaf, tabasco and thyme.  Cover and turn on low heat.
5. Into the frying pan, place the flour and oil.  Using medium heat, stir and mix the bottom of the pan slowly.  You are making the roux and thus locked into the stir mode for the next 30 minutes.  If you leave it will burn and taste like burnt toast.  The key is constant motion.  It should look like chocolate when its ready.  CAUTION: it will smoke quite a bit the last 5 minutes or so.
6.  When the roux is ready, turn off the heat and immediately add the onion/pepper/celery bowl to the roux to stop it from cooking any more.  Stir rigorously until the onions are clear or brown and the mix isn't sizzling anymore.  The longer you cook this, the better it tastes (ie caramelized onions)
7.  By now the chicken stock should be hot.  Add the roux/veggie mix to the chicken stock in the pot.  Stir to mix.  Turn it up to medium heat. 
8.  Add chicken and sausage and tomatos/garlic.  Stir.
9. Gauge the thickness of the mix.  Usually at this point I add more chicken stock to thin it out. Its considered sacrilege to add water but its ok in small amounts.   Simmer for at least 30 minutes  stirring every so often to keep the bottom from burning especially if its thick.  Okra will make a gumbo thicker if need be.  File will make a gumbo thicker if need be.  Its usually not added to the cooking pot- its to use at the table if preferred by the individual.  IF YOU ADD THE OKRA TOO EARLY THE GUMBO WILL BE BITTER.  Add it towards the end.

Some people like to add green onions but this dish is already heavy on onion flavor.  Add parsley just before removing from heat if desired. Honestly, I rarely use it except when its in the garden.

Gumbo is traditionally served with white rice.  A hearty piece of bread is nice as well to soak up the remaining gumbo.
Some people prefer a dry roux as well- baking the flour in an oven or cooking in pan til light brown and then adding that to the stock.  I've never done this

Problems you may run into:
1. burned the roux- start over
2. tastes like paste- too much flour or didn't cook roux long enough
3. Stock and roux mix are not mixing together- keep cooking it, a bad batch of flour with lots of moisture in it has done this to me as well. It will eventually mix.

I can usually whip this out from start to finish in 2 hours or so.  Honestly, the longer you simmer it, the better it is.  It will also taste completely different the next day (for the better)
« Last Edit: December 8, 2012, 08:12:32 pm by jerseybud »
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