Like most four-year olds, my petite is in love with all things Disney’s. These days it is The Princess and the Frog. At first we were a little worried about it since there is a creepy voodoo doctor and scary shadow creatures. For good reason, we had a major problem with pesky shadows a few months ago that made our night-time routine more like a cardio workout (running up and down the stairs) than a relaxing time of night. What I realize now, after watching Tiana quite a few time,s is that she is awesome! She has goals, ambition and best of all brains! My favorite line of the movie is when she is wishing on the evening star and her daddy tells her she needs to do more than wish on the star, that she can do anything she sets her mind to, and most importantly never ever lose sight of what is really important. What a great message to send out to petites.
If you’ve read some of my other posts you will know that my petite loves to cook. After watching Tiana for the first time she wanted to make gumbo. Lucky for her, I have an amazing recipe that is one of my favorites. So today, we declare is Gumbo & The Princess and the Frog day! Hip Hip Hooray!
When we lived in the south I would go to the library all the time and check out cookbooks, my favorites were the ones that were from churches, you know those little ones with the plastic bindings that church ladies would put their prized family recipes into. Love them. I put together a recipe that has all of our favorite things in it…you can make it more Cajun with crab meat and oysters; or more Creole depending on if you prefer sausage or poultry. I prefer them all so here is my version:
Petite Stag Gumbo
1/4 cup olive oil
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 sweet onion, Walla Walla or Vidalia, chopped
1 cup red bell pepper chopped
1 cup green pepper chopped
1 cup celery chopped
3 garlic cloves chopped
1 bag of frozen okra
4 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon chicken base or bullion cube
1 14.5 ounce can of diced tomatoes
3 cups of water
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/3 cup dried parsley
1 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 chicken breast cut into cubes
1 Smoked Turkey Kielbasa (you can use beef, or Andouille if you prefer), cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 pound of shrimp, cleaned and deveined
- Mix oil and flour in a large cast iron pot or stock pot. On medium heat, stirring constantly, you are looking for a light brown color, a caramel shade. Don’t just leave it, once it starts to brown it goes quickly and can burn. [If it burns or gets too dark, throw it out and clean the pot and start over, it will ruin the gumbo if you don’t]
- Add the onion, peppers, celery and garlic to the roux and cook stirring constantly for 3 minutes.
- Slowly add in the chicken stock while stirring, it will begin to thicken nicely.
- Add in the chicken base, water, can of tomatoes, bay leaves, thyme, parsley, lemon pepper, Worcestershire, frozen okra, chicken and sausage.
- Simmer on low for 1 hour 30 minutes.
- Add shrimp just before you plan to serve it to get them cooked through adding in the last ten minutes.
Serve over rice
I’m not going to lie, it is even better the second day, the spices do some amazing thing and meld together making it even more delicious.