Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Chicken Gumbo

It's New Year's Eve! Hope you all have plans to celebrate with family and friends! KK and I are hosting a few friends at our place, so we've spent the day finalizing the menu and putting out a few festive decorations.  2013 was full of memorable moments! To name just a few: I took fabulous trips to Orlando, New Orleans, Italy, and Portugal; celebrated at three weddings; became an aunt x2 when my twin niece and nephew were born; and KK and I celebrated our 1st anniversary (the frozen cake was delicious!).  I can't wait to see what's in store for 2014!

Before we close out 2013, here's the other hearty meal KK added to the Christmas week menu when we learned my dad wasn't feeling well.  KK's had his eye on this gumbo recipe for quite some time, but hasn't been able to find the frozen cut okra at our local grocery store.  Although we were able to find the okra in Virginia, we had to flip the chicken-to-sausage ratio because Harris Teeter didn't have larger rotisserie chicken.  Nevertheless, I feel like the additional sausage made it feel more like gumbo and less like chicken soup.  The original recipe also didn't have enough zing for me, but my addition of Cajun seasoning added the perfect amount of flavor.  As recommended by Martha, I served this gumbo with a side of Jiffy cornbread.  My dad, KK, and I all had seconds, so I consider this dish a success! Plus, the leftovers make for a perfect lunch or dinner a few days later!

Chicken Gumbo
Adapted from Martha Stewart
Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 6-8

3 Tbsp canola oil
⅓ cup flour
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
½ Tbsp Cajun seasoning
1 tsp oregano
Salt and pepper, to taste
14 oz. precooked smoked andouille sausage
16 oz. bag frozen cut okra
2 cups water
2 cups chicken broth
1.75 lb rotisserie chicken, skin and bones removed, meat shredded

1. Heat oil over medium in a 5-quart Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot.  Add flour and whisk constantly for 5-7 minutes, until flour turns a pale golden color.  Stir in bell peppers, onion, garlic, Cajun seasoning, and oregano; season with salt and pepper.  Stir occasionally and cook 10-12 minutes; vegetables will just be starting to soften.

2. Half sausage lengthwise, and cut into 1-inch thick slices.  Add sausage, okra, water, and chicken broth to the pot.  Bring to a boil, then stir in shredded chicken and heat until warmed through, about 2 minutes.  Season to taste with additional salt, pepper, and Cajun seasoning.

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