Though Disney didn’t quite get it right with their take on a healthy gumbo, they were on the right path. Gumbo can be full of flavor and toe the line of health. Growing up in New Orleans, I’ve certainly had many variations of gumbo-some that use everything but the kitchen sink-and others that were healthier and with fewer ingredients. My brother was the first in the family to cook a roux-less gumbo with some great seafood. Picking up a few things from him and adding my own twist was just what I needed to pass muster with the more common chicken and sausage gumbo. I used a couple cuts of chicken to make a flavorful base and okra as the thickening agent. I also used two types of sausage for that smokey taste and the kick of the South. I made this a few weeks back for my second gumbo cooking spree. Since it’s once again cold, this was an easy pull from the freezer and quick to defrost in the pot. Below is the recipe. Give it a try and make your own version of a healthier gumbo! 🙂
1 pack of drumsticks (5-6)
2 chicken breast
2 cups diced onion
3/4 lb andouille sausage
1/2 lb smoked sausage
16 oz fresh or frozen okra
1 cup diced green onion
1/2 tbsp. cayenne
1 1/2 tbsp. gumbo file
1/2 tbsp. sea salt
1/2 tbsp. coarse ground black pepper
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 tbsp. garlic powder
8 cups of water
1. Put a large pot on the stove with 6 cups of water over medium-high heat.
2. Rinse chicken thoroughly and remove skin from the chicken legs. It’s ok if some skin remains, but remove as much as possible, then add the chicken to the pot.
3. Peel and dice the onion and add to the pot.
4. Let boil for 15 minutes, then add okra and reduce to medium heat.
5. Let cook for 15 minutes, then remove chicken legs from pot, onto a plate and pull off chicken with a fork before adding back to the pot. You can also loosely break off pieces of the chicken breast, though it will mostly fall apart once it is done cooking. Add seasonings, green onion and remaining water.
6. Slice sausage and andouille in half and then into 1/4 inch pieces and add to the pot. Top it and reduce to low heat, to simmer.
7. Let cook for 25 minutes. Remove from heat and let it steep until ready to eat. *Double the recipe and freeze it for easy meal nights.