Do you want to experience the real taste of New Orleans? Then you need to try gumbo, a spicy soup that is popular in North America and it continues to be a favorite among locals and visitors alike. This soup is usually made with bell pepper, okra, rice, seafood, sausage, and filè powder. It is usually prepared in large black pots over an open flame, filling the air with its unique aroma. If you’re looking for a hearty meal that will satisfy your hunger, look no further than gumbo!
Gumbo Soup: a Mix of Cultures
Gumbo soup is spicy soup which includes meat, sausage, bell pepper, okra, seafood, etc.The dish is a mix of several cultural influences, all of which can be traced back to Africa. One theory suggests that gumbo was created by African slaves who were brought over to Louisiana during the slave trade. These slaves adapted their traditional dishes and ingredients to create a new cuisine that would reflect their Southern surroundings.
Another popular legend claims that gumbo was invented by a French cook named Pierre Le Moyne d’Iberville. On one cold winter evening, Iberville and his men were stranded on an island near Biloxi, Mississippi. They were running out of food, so the cook began to prepare a stew using whatever he could find in the kitchen. This included a spicy mixture of local vegetables and seafood.
The dish gained national attention in the 1970s, when Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards declared gumbo the state’s official cuisine. Today, gumbo is a staple food throughout Louisiana and can be found in restaurants all over the country. It’s even been featured on popular cooking shows like Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations.
Why Gumbo is so Special
So what makes gumbo so special? Well, it’s a little bit of everything. The soup is spicy, hearty, and flavorful – perfect for those cold winter days. Plus, there are endless variations to choose from, so you can always find a recipe that suits your taste buds.
What is Okra?
Okra is a vegetable that is widely used in Gumbo soup. The pod-like fruit has a slippery texture and a slightly spicy flavor. It’s also high in fiber, vitamin C, and potassium. More often than not, okra is used as a thickener in seafood gumbos rather than one with meat. This mucilaginous vegetable is generally cooked first, and other ingredients are added after the desired consistency is obtained.
If you’ve never tried okra before, it might be best to start with a milder recipe like gumbo. That way, you can get acquainted with the unique taste of this unusual vegetable.
What can You substitute for Okra?
If you can’t find okra, or if you don’t like the taste, there are several other ingredients that can be used as a substitute. One popular option is file powder. This spicy herb is made from the leaves of the sassafras tree and has a flavor that is similar to gumbo. Another alternative is cornstarch mixed with water (but this will make your dish less spicy).
Gumbo Original Recipe
There are many different recipes for gumbo. Some use only meat, while others include vegetables like okra and tomatoes. There’s even one recipe that calls for an entire can of tomato sauce! You can also find spicy versions that contain hot peppers such as cayenne or jalapeno. No matter what type of dish you choose, there will always be something delicious waiting for you at the end of your meal!
The most popular version is a spicy seafood-based soup made with chicken stock and shrimp (or crawfish). It may also include other types of fish such as red snapper and catfish; however, it’s best to stick to the traditional ingredients when making this dish because give it a unique flavor.
Here’s one of our favorite recipes for gumbo:
- ½ pound smoked sausage, diced
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ bell pepper, chopped
- ¼ onion, chopped
- ½ celery rib, chopped
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 14. oz can diced tomatoes, undrained or one and a half cups home made chicken stock
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the sausage, bell pepper, onion, celery, and flour. Cook until the vegetables are soft and the sausage is browned. Add the chicken broth and diced tomatoes (or home made chicken stock) to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Serve over cooked rice or pasta. Enjoy!
Get in Your Kitchen!
We hope you enjoyed this original recipe, which contains a piece of the real history of the American lands. So what are you waiting for? Get in your kitchen and start cooking up some gumbo today!