SHRIMP AND ANDOUILLE GUMBO (Adapted from the cafe sucre farine)

2 lbs large shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 tsp Cajun seasoning
½ cup sunflower oil or other mild flavored oil
1 lb Andouille pre-cooked chicken sausage, cut into 1/2 inch slices and halved
⅔ cups flour
1 large onion peeled and diced into 1/4-inch dice
2 large green bell peppers diced in 1/4-inch dice
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chicken broth
1 tsp paprika
½ lb carrots peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
½ tsp oregano
½ tsp dry basil
½ tsp dry thyme leaves
1 tsp kosher salt more to taste
½ tsp fresh ground black pepper more to taste

Sliced scallions for garnish

Toss shrimp with Cajun seasoning, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Heat oil in a large heavy-duty Dutch oven over medium heat. Add sausage and cook for 6-8 minutes or until sausage is nicely browned.

Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add flour to oil and cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until mixture turns a deep golden brown color, slightly darker than the color of peanut butter. This will take about 10 minutes. If the mixture is darkening too quickly, reduce heat.

Add onions, peppers and garlic.

Cook, stirring occasionally for 8-10 minutes until onions begin to soften. Add the chicken stock, carrots, spices and pepper.

Stir well. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a slow simmer. Cook for 25-30 minutes, uncovered until carrots are very tender.  ***SEE NOTE

Add shrimp and reserved andouille sausage, stir to combine, then return gumbo to a boil. Cover pot and turn off the heat. Let gumbo sit, covered for 10 minutes before serving. The shrimp will cook perfectly during this 10 minute resting time. Taste and season, if needed. Serve in bowls with rice. Garnish with sliced green onions, if desired. ***NOTE: I’m making this gumbo in advance, so I’ll add everything EXCEPT the shrimp ahead of time.  Then before serving, I’ll heat the gumbo, add the shrimp; bring to a boil then let it sit for at least 10 minutes to cook the shrimp.  THEN serve and enjoy!

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