Dad’s Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

It might seem odd to associate gumbo with snow, but a few years ago, before a huge snowstorm blew through, I decided if I was going to be snowed in, I was going to make gumbo—just because. So, I ran to the store with the rest of Northern Virginia, and came home with the necessary loot. The next day I made it, and my house smelled like my Dad’s. Nothing else smells like gumbo; nothing else tastes like gumbo. It is warm, steeped in tradition, and so satisfying—just the kind of food you want when it’s icy cold outside.

So, naturally, a few days ago when the biggest snow storm since that one in 2010 was forecast, I went to the store with milk, bread, and gumbo supplies on my list. I made it last night for some dear friends—girl time and gumbo. Heart-warming and belly-warming. Just perfect.

I highly recommend getting all your ingredients prepped and ready to go before you begin cooking. It makes the process so much more enjoyable and less stressful.

Here’s how I made it.

**Printer-friendly recipe at bottom of post**

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

serves 6-8

prep time 20-30 minutes

total cooking time 4-5 hours

Ingredients:

For Gumbo:

  • 1 smoked sausage, such as kielbasa, sliced into 3/4 to 1 inch slices
  • 4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 2 medium yellow onions
  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 dry bay leaves
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup Cajun seasoning

For Cajun Seasoning:

(This makes more than you will need for this recipe, so be sure not to put your chicken hands in it so you can save it for other recipes.)

  • 3 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme

To Prepare:

Combine all Cajun seasoning ingredients in a bowl or jar and mix thoroughly.

Season chicken generously on both sides with Cajun seasoning (should take about 1/4 cup) and set aside.

IMG_5003

Either dice the vegetables very finely by hand, or slice them into large chunks and let the food processor do all the work. Pulse them until they are minced, but not liquefied.

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Heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy, enameled dutch-oven and cook sliced sausage until it is browned. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and try not to eat it all (Or try not to let your kids eat it all!).

IMG_5002

Working in batches, over medium-high heat, brown the seasoned chicken thighs on both sides and remove to a dish to cool. Place browned chicken and sausage in the fridge while you continue with the recipe.

IMG_5007

Add the remaining oil to the pan and the cup of flour. This is the most important step in the gumbo making process. Over medium heat, stir slowly and constantly until your flour mixture becomes a very dark peanut butter color and consistency. This should take about 25-30 minutes. Be patient and scrape the bottom to make sure it isn’t sticking and burning.

IMG_5009

As soon as your roux is a nice dark peanut-butter/chocolatey color, add your minced vegetables immediately.

IMG_5010

Stir together—you will have a very thick, pasty mixture. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add your chicken stock slowly. Add bay leaves and sausages and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and gently simmer for 1 hour.

IMG_5011

After 1 hour, add chicken and cook for an additional 2-3 hours at a very gentle simmer, stirring and skimming fat occasionally.

Serve in bowls with plain white rice, good Louisiana hot sauce, and a sprinkling of chopped green onions. Crystal is the hot sauce brand my dad raised me on, and it’s still my favorite (and my son’s).

Enjoy! Laissez les bons temps rouler!

Dad's Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 5 hours
  • Difficulty: easy to medium
  • Print

Ingredients:

For Gumbo:

  • 1 smoked sausage, such as kielbasa, sliced into 3/4 to 1 inch slices
  • 4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 2 medium yellow onions
  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 dry bay leaves
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup Cajun seasoning
  • Hot sauce and chopped green onions for serving, optional

For Cajun Seasoning:

(This makes more than you will need for this recipe, so be sure not to put your chicken hands in it so you can save it for other recipes.)

  • 3 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme

To Prepare:

Combine all Cajun seasoning ingredients in a bowl or jar and mix thoroughly.

Season chicken generously on both sides with Cajun seasoning (should take about 1/4 cup) and set aside.

Either dice the vegetables very finely by hand, or slice them into large chunks and let the food processor do all the work. Pulse them until they are minced, but not liquefied.

Heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy, enameled dutch-oven and cook sliced sausage until it is browned. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and try not to eat it all (Or try not to let your kids eat it all!).

Working in batches, over medium-high heat, brown the seasoned chicken thighs on both sides and remove to a dish to cool. Place browned chicken and sausage in the fridge while you continue with the recipe.

Add the remaining oil to the pan and the cup of flour. This is the most important step in the gumbo making process. Over medium heat, stir slowly and constantly until your flour mixture becomes a very dark peanut butter color and consistency. This should take about 25-30 minutes. Be patient and scrape the bottom to make sure it isn’t sticking and burning.

As soon as your roux is a nice dark peanut-butter/chocolatey color, add your minced vegetables immediately.

Stir together—you will have a very thick, pasty mixture. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add your chicken stock slowly. Add bay leaves and sausages and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and gently simmer for 1 hour.

After 1 hour, add chicken and cook for an additional 2-3 hours at a very gentle simmer, stirring and skimming fat occasionally.

Serve in bowls with plain white rice and good Louisiana hot sauce. Crystal is the brand my dad raised me on, and it’s still my favorite (and my son’s).

Enjoy! Laissez les bons temps rouler!

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2 thoughts on “Dad’s Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

  1. Pingback: Mini King Cakes for Mardi Gras! | cook on a whim

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