Your roux is a 2 to 1 mix; 2 cups of a good olive oil like Carapelli, do not use Light or Virgin, and then 4 cups of all purpose flour. Heat the oil on medium temp, when hot add the flour, you want a dark brown but not burned mixture, this takes constant stirring. It might take as long as 45 min, good tasting food takes a lot of preparation. In Cajun kitchens there are so many ways to make a roux; this is just one of many. Now I know is some stores the have a roux never tried but you can. Price Cutter in Springfield has it.
While we are making the roux we are also making the stock:
- 3 to 6 quarts of water, depending on how much you are making, this is what we are going to make our stock with.
- Place one or two chickens in for about 45 minutes, take out and cool, then de bone 3 to 5 pounds of heads on shrimp, 9/12 count take off the heads and shells and place them in the chicken stock to cook for another 30 minutes. You are cooking both broths; we are looking to get the entire flavor.
- Then strain the broth, (here is one more secret) take the heads and with a knife scrap all the meat and fat out of head and put back into the broth. This gives the broth a fatter, richer flavor. When the stock is ready add to the roux be very careful the roux is hot, I will usually add a couple of cups at a time until it cools down then pour the rest in. We must use the holy trilogy, onions, bell peppers and celery. On the bell peppers I use green, orange, and yellow and purple, each has its on different taste.
- Now, as far as the sausage goes I like to add two to three different types, Andouille, Gator and Shrimp each has a distinctive taste. 1 pound of each Andouille, Gator, and Shrimp Sausage sliced use at least 2 pounds of sausage,and 1 pound of Tasso. I also add alligator meat cut in large pieces and crawfish tails but ( this will make you gumbo to expensive).
- 2 bags of okra unless you have put some up from the summer which would be the way to go (again I like a lot of okra, so play it by ear you might want to add another bag) 6 cups chopped onions or more 3 cups of chopped bell peppers, different colors 2 cups of chopped green onions 4 cups of finely chopped celery (this is something you can add more of if you wish) even the leafs Garlic I like garlic from Gilroy California, any would be fine, we need 1/2 to 1 cup, I like garlic so the more the merrier for me 2 cups for finely chopped parsley 1/2 cup of cilantro AND 6 bay leaves. 2 to 4 cups of a late season white wine to taste I did find a St. James (Velvet White) that seems to work okay, you might get with your winery and see what late in the season sweet grape wine that they may have for cooking with. At this time you can de vein your shrimp, I personal do not, I will cut the shrimp in half or quarters, because we are using 9/12 shrimp and they are large, I will always drop some of the shrimp in the gumbo whole, make sure you pull off the whiskers , adds more flavor. 4 to 5 tbsp of Lea & Perrins Cayenne pepper to taste, you do not want it to hot for children Salt, this is the old grandmother measuring method by hand go so, again add to taste 1 large can of tomato sauce Now we let simmer on the stove on low heat for 4 to 6 hours, and then place in refrigerator overnight.
- Serve the next day over a bed of rice.
If you can find file powder ( Mamma Jean’s on Sunshine) add the rice before you serve the gumbo over it and then the file'. when your reheat be sure to keep stirring we do not want it to stick to bottom and burn. KEY: after you have completed your gumbo let it set over night in the refrigerator before you serve it, that way it lets all the flavors marry