My favorite food from New Orleans is gumbo. Slimy okra, spicy andouille sausage and chicken combine to make the perfect comfort food during cooler weather.
- 12 cups water
- 3 pounds chicken parts
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 pounds okra
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 pound andouille sausage, sliced
- 1 (28 ounce) can Italian-style whole peeled tomatoes
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon file powder
- Combine water and chicken in large pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until chicken is tender, about 1 hour. Using tongs, transfer chicken to strainer and cool, saving cooking liquid. Remove meat from bones in pieces.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy skillet over medium heat. Add okra and cook until no longer sticky, stirring frequently, about 20 minutes; set aside.
- Stir flour and remaining 1/2 cup oil in heavy large Dutch oven. Cook over medium heat until deep golden brown, stirring frequently, about 6 minutes. Add 4 cups reserved chicken cooking broth, okra, andouille sausage, tomatoes with their juices, bell pepper, celery, garlic, bay leaf, salt, thyme, basil, cayenne, and pepper. Cover partially and simmer until thickened, about 1 1/2 hours.
- Spoon off any fat from surface of gumbo. Add chicken and file powder to gumbo and simmer gently 15 minutes. (If preparing ahead, cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before serving.) Mound rice in shallow bowls if desired. Ladle gumbo over and serve.