It was 11:50pm when it happened. I was asleep, dreaming of Halloween Decorations. I awoke with a start when something landed on my head. It was furry and shaking. As I tried to lift a shaking furry Tobie off my head, a crack of thunder exploded and a bolt lightning flashed. The pups were in full-out panic mode. I closed the window and cuddled back under the covers with Tobie. Ralfie decided he’d rather pace the room. After about half an hour, they decided we were going to live and fell asleep. Poor little guys!
Today has been cloudy, rainy, and all around gloomy. It’s the perfect day for something spicy and lively. Now I’m daydreaming of a roux the color of coffee. The same roux we made at the cooking class in Arkansas earlier this September. A roux that you’ll be dreaming of, too.
1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
1 Tbsp Paprika
1 Tbsp White Pepper
1 Tbsp Black Pepper
1 Tbsp Thyme
1 Tbsp Oregano
1 Tbsp Basil
1/2 tsp Cajun Seasoning (Slap Yo Mama is a good one)
4 lbs medium to large Shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 Tbsp Salt, divided
20 oz. (600 g, 1-1/4 cups) All Purpose Flour
20 oz. (1-1/4 cups) Vegetable Oil (FRESH)
2 cups Onion, diced
2 cups, Celery, chopped
2 cups Bell Pepper, chopped
2 Tbsp Fresh Garlic, chopped
4 Bay Leaves
4 qts Chicken Stock
2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp Pepper Sauce (Crystal Hot Sauce is my favorite)
2 lbs Andouille Sausage, sliced into 1/2″ circles
3 cups Long Grain Rice, cooked
1 bunch green onions, white and green parts chopped for garnish
1. Combine cayenne pepper, paprika, white pepper, black pepper, thyme, oregano, basil, and Cajun seasoning. Season the shrimp with 1 Tbsp salt and 1 Tbsp pepper seasoning mix. Refrigerate.
2. Combine oil and flour in a large pot. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the roux is copper brown (the color of good coffee). This may take up to 45 minutes, so be patient. Don’t let it smoke! Also, BE CAREFUL. Roux is like liquid napalm and will burn you!
3. Add the onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic, bay leaves, and the remaining salt and pepper seasoning mix. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Cook about 90 minutes. At first, the pot will look a bit curdled. It will smooth out and thicken as it cooks. Skim fat from the top as necessary while simmering.
4. Add the Andouille sausage and cook about 30 minutes.
5. Add the shrimp. Cook an additional 5 minutes or until shrimp is warmed through.
6. Serve each cup of gumbo with 2 Tbsp long grain rice and garnish with chopped green onions.