Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Gumbo Blah Blah

I made gumbo a few weeks ago, for the first time. I followed the recipe my mother follows, which is basically the one in "The New Orleans Cookbook." The verdict: It was O.K.!

It's really not that hard a thing to make. There is a lot of chopping to do, but as long as you get all the ingredients prepped and ready beforehand, the rest is just stirring. (After browning the chicken parts first.) Of course, the hardest part is making the roux, which is just oil and flour, stirred until your arm falls off, or it is the correct shade of brown, whichever comes first. It took me about 20 minutes of stirring before it got to the color the recipe said (I can't recall right now, but I think it said "hazelnut" color), but I probably could have let it go a little longer; I was just scared of it burning. After that, you add the veggies, and let them cook, and then add the water and meat and simmer for at least 45 minutes. Then add some shrimps, and serve!

It wasn't as good as my mother's; I thought it was a tad bland, but for a first attempt, I think it was all right, and it was even better the next day, as leftovers. It's definitely something I will attempt again in the future, paying a little more attention to the whole roux process.

Oh, also, for anyone thinking of following the recipe in the book, do NOT add as much water as they say to. It will be waaaay too bland and thin if you do. I added a little more than half the recommend amount before stopping.