I love me some gumbo ! Go ahead Grammar Police – do your worst. But, remember, this is The South. OK, moving on…
Good gumbo is hard to beat. It’s also hard to make. It takes forever and requires a special technique to making rue. That slow cooked oil and flour mixture that gives it that thick brown syrup that sticks to the white rice that it’s poured over. Yes, it’s yummy, and just think of the caloric count of oil+flour! I’m not going to spend hours cooking something too fattening to eat! Oh, no I haven’t got time for all that today (or most any day). What I have got are all the ingredients for a decent pot of that Southern classic, super quick style.
I’m not sure I should even bother with a recipe, this is just a ‘dump’ soup. But ok, here’s it goes…
2 Cups Chicken Stock (I like mine homemade and frozen in 2 cup packages)
2 Cups Water (to make shrimp stock out of)
3 or 4 links of Sausage – yes, leftovers from grill-night are perfect! (Chicken sausage from Aidells)
2 Cups Shrimp, thawed (ok, maybe a bit more)
1 bag Gumbo Veggies* (or a soup blend that includes okra)
1 tsp Cajun Seasoning (I like Tony Chachere’s, but it’s HOT)
1/2 tsp Emerils Essence seasoning
OK, this is the tricky part – Everybody into the pool ! I use my favorite ‘Wonder Pot’ (5 qt LeCreuset) but you could easily do this in a CrockPot and have this ready to go after work. BTW, yes, there were leftover grilled onions in the fridge so they went in too!
As it all melts, and becomes actual soup, peel the shrimp and get them back in the fridge. They go in last. Why? If you cook them all day they’ll be tough like shrimp flavored bubble-gum.
But, do take some water (2 cups or so) and put the peels/shells in and boil them up. They’ll turn pink just like the shrimp will later. Let them simmer a bit (10 – 15 min) to make a somewhat decent stock. Now, if you opted for the crock-pot version, wrap these shells up in a cheesecloth and let them float in the soup all day. Fish out the bag and discard later.
Strain that shrimp stock into the pot. This really does add to the flavor. The shrimp themselves will go in shortly before serving and won’t get a chance to add that much to the flavor party.
Let it cook up for 45 min or and hour. Or leave it in the Crock-Pot on low for the day. Just before you turn off the heat, add the shrimp. I cut mine up into spoon-friendly size pieces. When they’re pink, they’re done.
No, it’s not gumbo. The thickness comes from the okra, a veggie, just imagine! Low fat gumbo?? Yes, please! I’ll hold the rice for mine, thank you. And I’ll save my calories for a second helping.