Easy Breezy Gumbo!

I absolutely love gumbo! I have been making gumbo for over 40 years! I learned about gumbo when I was a young nursing student. The person who introduced me to gumbo was a classmate from Louisiana. Once I became a registered nurse, I made delicious gumbo for special occasions for many years.

About 20 years later, my brother went to a party, got a take home dish of gumbo and gave it to me. I was shocked!!! The dish looked NOTHING like what I had been making for years! It did not have the clear broth, instead in was in a gravy / brown sauce. It tasted so DELICIOUS!!!! I realized that all those many years, I had been making gumbo the wrong way. My classmate from Louisiana did not even know how to make gumbo. She was actually making a type of creole soup… NOT GUMBO!!!!

So, I spent many years purchasing cookbooks to learn how to make gumbo with roux! In recent years, I watched many many videos to learn the technique for making roux. All were epic FAILS!

Yesterday, Sunday, March 6, 2022 I saw a simple gumbo dish in a Facebook Chicago Foodie group. I then lucked up, found the best basic gumbo recipe online. I had all the ingredients to make the gumbo. But, I stepped back to reflect on gumbo. I did not want to throw another pot of gumbo in the trash!!!!

What is GUMBO????

Gumbo is a simple soup with chicken stock as the base. Roux is added to thicken the soup. The “trinity” of veggies will give gumbo that unique delicious taste. Actually, the sauce of the gumbo should be so delicious that nothing else is needed when served over rice. But, of course we add nice meat items.

True Cajuns will tell you never add tomatoes to gumbo. I now agree! Yesterday was the very first time that I did NOT add tomatoes to my gumbo. I never will again. My Easy Breezy gumbo is true Cajun!

Easy Breezy Gumbo Recipe

Pre-heat oven to 350F

Prepare chicken:

  • Preferred chicken parts
  • Olive oil
  • Cajun seasoning, hot
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Oil chicken parts, season with Cajun seasoning and cayenne pepper. Bake covered for 45 minutes. Then set aside and de-bone when cool.

Prepare sausage:

  • Smoked sausage, sliced. I prefer skinless.
  • Olive oil
  • Sautee over low heat until brown. Remove from pan, set aside. Save the drippings.

Prepare the roux:

I use Tony Chachere’s Roux mix. It is great! I never mastered the technique for roux. Somone online recommended using a roux mix. It was one of the best suggestions ever! I highly recommend this brand.
  • Follow the easy steps on the container. I used 1/2 mix with 1 cup of cold water. Whisk over heat until desired thickness reached. Set aside. Be aware that you may not need to use all of the roux which can be refrigerated.

Prepare chicken stock:

  • This is easy. Just use your preferred bouillon chicken flavored mix. Add water, mix over low heat. Remove from heat and set aside. 2 cups of chicken broth should be sufficient.

Prepare veggies:

  • Celery, chopped
  • Green bell pepper, chopped
  • Onion, chopped
  • Garlic, minced
  • Okra, cut
  • Olive oil
  • Sautee veggies in olive oil and drippings from chicken and sausage. Use a pot that will be large enough for all of the gumbo ingredients. Sautee until veggies are tender and onions are a bit transparent.

Prepare shrimps:

  • Rinse shrimps under cold running water. Remove shells and de-vein each shrimp. Food is expensive these days, so I cut each shrimp into smaller pieces.

Bring everything together!

To the pot of sauteed veggies, add chicken broth and stir. Add the roux, one spoonful at a time to reach desired thickness. This may take about 7 minutes. Then, add the de-bone chicken and sausage, mix well.

Finally, add the shrimps, BUT cook only for a few minutes. Do not overcook the shrimps. Cook only until shrimps become pink. Overcooked shrimps will be rubbery!!!

Serve with rice. Listen… just use generic rice. 1 cup of rice to 2 cups of water. Cover and simply cook for 15 minutes.

There are a lot of steps in this recipe. Six steps to be exact. Just prepare everything before you start cooking. This is not a dish where you cook as you continue to prep.