Recipe: Bill6’s Gumbo

Here’s a recipe I received from my dear Bill6. And then I mercilessly adulterated to my own spice tastes. Recipe first, blather after!

  • The Ingredients:
    • The Trinity:
      • 3 large onions, chopped (yellow, white, or red)
      • 2 cups chopped celery
      • 2 cups chopped green pepper
    • Theo’s Cajun-ish Seasoning:
      • 1/4 cup kosher salt
      • 3 tablespoons onion powder
      • 3 tablespoons garlic powder
      • 3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
      • 2 tablespoons black Hawaiian salt
      • 2 tablespoons Pink Himalayan Salt
      • 2 tablespoons garlic salt
      • 2 tablespoons ground white pepper
      • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
      • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
      • 1 and 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
      • 1 and 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
      • 1 teaspoon celery salt
      • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
      • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    • 1 cup olive oil
    • 1 shot glass (3 tablespoons) of a dark red wine drink/enjoy
    • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes
    • 2 lbs Andouille, mild or hot
    • 1 cup flour
    • 8 cloves of garlic, chopped
    • 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
    • 2 large onions, chopped (white or yellow)
    • 2 shallots, chopped
    • 1 cup of corn, off the cob or canned that has been drained
    • green onions, diced
    • Cooked rice or French bread for serving
  • The Way of Preparing:
    1. Season all of the cubed chicken well, reserving about three tablespoons of spice mix if able.
    2. Brown all chicken in the oil over medium heat. Add the andouille sausage to pot and sauté with chicken.  
    3. Remove both from the pot.
    4. In the same pot, make a roux with equal parts oil and flour to the desired color. Make it low and slow. The darker the better for this particular gumbo.
    5. Add the onions, celery, and green pepper to the roux. Stir well to combine.
    6. Add the garlic and the shallots and stir continuously.
    7. Cook the vegetables to your desired tenderness.
    8. Then add both the chicken and sausage back to pot and cook, stirring frequently.  
    9. Gradually stir in the stock a half cup at a time. Add the shot of red wine, if using, and bring to a boil over medium to medium-high heat.
    10. Reduce heat to simmer and cook, covered, for an hour or more. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and/or the remaining Cajun-ish seasoning.
    11. Approximately ten minutes before serving, add the green onions.
    12. Serve the gumbo either over rice or without rice and with French bread for dipping.

I love okra. I will go to restaurants with deep-fried okra and order a double helping of it as comfort food. I have even, in a pinch, bought the bag of frozen, breaded okra and baked it at home to get a good fix.

That being said: I utterly despise cooking with it. No matter how pretty a culinary picture Alton Brown paints of our slimy friend, it is a no-go for me.

Now, on the rare occasion that I am the one at the stove making gumbo, and not the culinary star that is Bill6, I rely pretty much entirely on the roux and time to thicken my gumbo. And why doesn’t my gumbo have shrimp or some such in it you may ask? Because I have a shrimp allergy and my Darling Wife does not enjoy eating what she calls “sea bugs”. Technically speaking, lobsters are the bugs of the ocean but when my wife is happy, I’m happier.

Bill6’s version is magically delicious, but this is the one that I have tweaked and adjusted and fiddled with over the last literal decade since I took my one and only Spring Break vacation in New Orleans back in 2009 with my friend Geo.

Try out this recipe! Let me know if you have any non-shrimp containing variants you would like me to try!

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