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Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

Monday, December 09, 2013

Recipe adapted from Making Life Delicious.  [Recipe serves 6].

Finally accepting the fact that winter is (unofficially) here in Wisconsin, I decided it was time to bring back a classic comfort food dish to warm up to.  And let me tell you - leftovers have never tasted so good after shoveling in temps with a wind chill of -15° F.  This dish does take some time, but after getting the roux to the correct stage, most of the remaining time is letting the dish simmer on its own.  This is one of those dishes that most people have had at some point, but have not yet attempted to make at home due to the assumed complexity of the dish.  Let me assure you, the complex, rich, and even soulful end-product is nothing more than the combination of basic cooking concepts (dicing, roux-making, and sauce-making by gradually adding chicken stock).

Before I leave you to it, here are a few notes pertaining to the flavor of the dish:
  • Use low-sodium chicken stock (vs. regular chicken stock).  I almost always use low-sodium broths when I cook so that I can control the amount of salt in a dish, but after failing to do so this one time, could definitely taste the difference.  Even without additional salt at the end, you have salt in the sausage, Creole seasoning, and Worcestershire sauce.  Additional salt in 6 cups of stock puts the sodium level too high in my opinion.
  • If you would rather use your own blend of seasoning, go for it.  The following recipe is what the original author came up with and it seemed to do the trick for me.  Also, continuing on the first bullet point, if you buy a store-bought Creole seasoning, do so with caution.  Most Creole/Cajun blends these days are heavy on the salt, and light on the herbs and spices.  Using a Creole seasoning that is more like seasoned salt could easily ruin the dish.
  • The Creole seasoning listed below yields a gumbo that has heat, but is not overpowering,  If you aren't a fan of hot dishes, try using 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.  If you think the hotter a dish is, the better, increase to 3/4 teaspoons of cayenne pepper and add hot sauce to taste at the end.

INGREDIENTS:

Creole Seasoning:
5 tablespoons paprika
4 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons granulated onion
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 tablespoon garlic powder

Remaining Ingredients:

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 pounds chicken breasts

1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup onions, diced
1/2 cup green bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced

9 ounces andouille sausage, sliced or diced
6 cups low-sodium chicken stock
3 tablespoons garlic, minced
3 bay leaves

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Hot sauce (if desired)
Green onions, sliced

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 375° F.  Mix the dried spices and herbs together in a bowl.  Reserve 3 tablespoons of the seasoning for later.

Lightly coat the chicken breasts in vegetable oil and coat with the remaining seasoning (you may have extra).  Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and transfer the chicken to the sheet.  Reserve.

Mix the onion, celery, and bell pepper in a medium bowl.  Heat the remaining vegetable oil in a Dutch oven (or similar thick-bottomed pot) over medium heat.  Once hot, whisk in the flour.  Continue to cook and whisk for 15 minutes, or until the roux has turned milk chocolate in color.

While you're working on the roux, transfer the chicken to the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the thickest part of the thighs register 165° F.  Remove from the oven and reserve.

When the roux is set, add 1 1/2 cups (eyeball 75%) of your diced vegetables, all of the andouille sausage, and 1 tablespoon of the Creole seasoning.  Cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until the vegetables start to soften.

Add 1 cup of the chicken stock and stir until a thick paste is achieved.  Add 2 additional cups and whisk.  Lastly, add the remaining chicken stock along with the remaining vegetables, remaining Creole seasoning, garlic, and bay leaves.  Bring everything to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer.  Add the chicken thighs to the pot and simmer for roughly 2 hours.

During the last 10 minutes, remove the chicken and shred into bite-size pieces (it should be extremely tender at this point).  Return the chicken to the gumbo and add the Worcestershire sauce.

Serve with rice and garnish with Italian parsley, green onion, and hot sauce (if desired).

[Interested in learning the difference between gumbo and jambalaya?  Click here for some key points].

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2 comments

  1. Wow! I can't wait to try your recipe!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks you; let me know how it turns out!

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