Fast Eddie’s File Gumbo

(1 lb.) low fat 94 to 98% fat free Chaurice (Cajun Sausage) or spicy Italian Sausage, uncooked
2 tablespoon unbleached white or wheat flour
1 1/2 lb. skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut in 1 by 1/2-inch strips sprinkled with a ¼ teaspoon oregano Gumbo Base
Mix together in a small bowl:
1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons chili powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or Cajun seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1/2 teaspoon oregano, 1 teaspoon garlic powder and 3 bay leaves
1 large onion, chopped
4 celery ribs chopped
2 medium green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
2 medium red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons filé powder *
1/2 cup unbleached or wheat flour
2 to 3 garlic cloves, pressed
1 28-oz. can chopped stewed tomatoes
3 1/2 to 4 cups water mixed with 4 to 5 teaspoons chicken or fish base or bouillon
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cups sliced okra, about 1/2 lb. fresh or frozen -optional
1 1/2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce – optional
white rice cooked without butter or salt

1. Sprinkle sausage with 2 tablespoons flour, set aside. Mix filé powder with flour; set aside.

2. Preheat a large stock pot or Dutch oven on medium-high. Add chicken and brown, 2 to 3 minutes both sides. Remove chicken and set aside. Add sausage to pan and cook, turning often until flour has left a golden brown coating on bottom of pan. Sausage will stick to bottom of pan because of flour. This is fine, just gently scrape it off. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook until well browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove and set aside to drain on paper towels, if necessary.

3. Increase heat to medium, add onion, peppers, celery and fresh garlic. Cover and cook 10 to 15 minutes, until moisture from vegetables has deglazed pan. Check vegetables every few minutes to stir and make sure they are not sticking. If vegetables do stick, add a little water. Stirring, add tomatoes to vegetables and return heat to low.

4. Stir flour-filé powder mixture into vegetables a small amount at a time, adding up to 1/2 cup water to achieve a workable consistency. (Without enough liquid, the flour-filé mixture becomes difficult to blend with the vegetables.) Stir pepper sauce and spice mixture into vegetable-flour mixture; cooking until fragrant, 2 minutes. Add water, stirring and scraping the bottom of pan until all ingredients have been mixed together.

5. Stirring frequently, increase heat to medium-high and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. (The gumbo base can be made in advance up to this point and frozen if desired up to 3 months.)

6. Add chicken and sausage to gumbo base, continuing to simmer an additional 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked. Add teaspoon olive oil, okra and hot pepper sauce to gumbo and if necessary, adjust seasonings. Remove from heat and serve over hot rice.

Yield: about 8 – 2 cup servings at approximately 248 calories; 5.5 grams total fat; 1.2 grams saturated fat; 73 milligrams cholesterol; 16 grams carbohydrate; 3 grams dietary fiber; 33 grams protein; 1100 milligrams sodium.

1 cup white rice steamed without butter or salt contains 170 calories; 0 fat; 0 cholesterol; 23 grams carbohydrate; 0 dietary fiber; 4 grams protein, 0 sodium.

Recipe from the cookbook, Lighten Up — The Art of Low Fat Gourmet Cooking, by Mary E. Ross

Add comment