Gumbo combines ingredients and culinary practices of several cultures, including French, Spanish, German, West African and Choctaw. The dish is the official cuisine of the state of Louisiana.
4 pounds chicken thighs
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes
2 cups chicken broth or water
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 dried bay leaf
1 (10-ounce) package frozen sliced okra
1 1/2 pounds crabmeat, shrimp, crawfish, lobster and/or surimi
1 (10-ounce) jar medium oysters, drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Place chicken thighs in a single layer on a shallow baking pan and season with salt and pepper. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until done. Remove chicken from pan and set aside to cool. Deglaze pan with a little water, scraping the bottom to remove any browned bits and pour pan juices into a fat separator and set aside. When chicken is cool enough to handle, pick meat and discard skin and bones.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Add onion and green pepper and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in flour, reduce heat to low and cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Add garlic, and cook for 2 more minutes, or until fragrant. Stir in tomatoes (undrained), chicken broth, red pepper flakes, thyme and bay leaf. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened. Cover and and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chicken, pan juices (discard fat) and okra. Return to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in crab, oysters and parsley. Cook gently 5 to 10 minutes or until oysters begin to curl and crab is thoroughly warmed (if using shrimp, shrimp should be pink and opaque throughout). Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over rice in soup bowls.
Makes 4 servings.