Sunday, December 11, 2016

Turkey and Sausage Gumbo - Monday, One Week Menu

Hello Everyone!
Oh my goodness, I am so behind on everything this season!!!

 My internet went down for an entire week and I couldn't post my week of Thanksgiving leftover recipes. Then, once the cable guy finally showed up to fix the internet - it only took him three scheduled appointments before he arrived - I had rehearsals every night for a week.  I also got a new, eleven month old French bulldog puppy the week that this all happened.

This is Moss in his corner at the theatre where I work.
His name is Morris.  We call him Moss and he is our fourth dog.
That means that we now have four dogs and two cats.  ("Hi, my name is Carole and I have a pet addiction.")
All of this means that I am behind on both my posts and my Christmas decorating.  The outside of my house looks festive but the inside looks like any other time of the year.  I hope to change that tonight and tomorrow night.
I thought for a long time on how I should post the recipes that I promised for the one week leftovers menu, and I figured the best solution was to post the recipes as I originally intended so that they would be easy to find if anyone wanted to try them, but that I wouldn't put a notice up like I usually do and that I would try to get my Christmas posts up and those I would post on Facebook.  We'll see how that works.

Today I am doing a recipe that no one in Louisiana needs - a recipe for Turkey and Sausage Gumbo.  Everyone has their own version of grandma's gumbo. Since I don't have a Cajun grandma, but have lived in the state for years, I have come up with my own version of gumbo that I have learned from several of my friend's grandmas.  This is my recipe that my husband, who has lived in Louisiana all of his life loves.

Turkey and Sausage Gumbo

2 cups cooked turkey, cut into 1 inch cubes
5 tbsp. oil (for frying)
1 1/2 pounds Andouille Sausage  or Smoked Sausage, chopped into coins
6 tbsp. all purpose flour
4 cups onion, minced
1 bell pepper, chopped finely  (or about 1 cup)
1/2 cup celery, chopped finely
2 1/2 quarts chicken stock
2 tbsp. garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. ground thyme
3 bay leaves
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tbsp. basil
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 cup green onion, chopped (optional)

1.  In a large, heavy bottomed stock pot, heat up the oil over medium heat.
2.  Add the Andouille sausage and fry for 4 to 5 minutes.  Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve on a plate for later.
3.  Turn down the heat on the stove to medium-low.
4.  To the oil left in the pot, add the flour and slowly cook until the flour is the brown color of dark chocolate, making certain to whisk constantly.  (This is the hardest step and is called making a roux.  If you have the heat too low, your roux will take forever to cook, if you cook it on too high a heat, the roux will burn and your gumbo will turn bitter and not taste very good.)  Another way of telling your roux is done, other than color, is the smell.  When it is close to being ready, it will smell like it is just on the edge of burning.  (My husband always knows the roux is almost ready by that almost burning smell.)

This is what the roux looks like when you first add the flour.

This is the color it should be when it is done

5.  When the roux is ready, add the onions, bell pepper and celery and saute until the vegetables are limp.

This right here, is a picture of Cajun goodness.  It is the trinity being cooked in the dark flour roux.  This is one of the best smells that you will ever experience.

6.  Add the chicken stock, a little at a time, and stir until blended each time.
7.  Add garlic, thyme, bay leaves, cayenne pepper and basil.  Stir until mixed well.  Carefully add salt and pepper to taste.
8.  Let the mixture slowly simmer for at least 40 minutes.
9.  After it has simmered for 40 minutes, add the turkey and the sausage.  Cook until turkey is warmed through and tender, about 20 minutes.
10.  Remove the pot from heat and add the green onions.  Let set for 10-15 minutes and serve over cooked rice.

This dish, minus the rice freezes great!
What my husband and I usually do is have our bowls for dinner, save enough for one more night's worth of meals and freeze the rest.  It makes a great quick meal in the winter time.

I will try to keep posting recipes and Christmas posts will be coming soon!

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