Joe bought a new soup and sandwich cookbook for me a couple of weeks ago. It’s a special publication by Cuisine at Home with beautiful pictures and ideas about ‘adding on’ a side dish to each soup or sandwich. He pointed out some of his favorites and then told me that he’s a simple man – he really just loves soup. My husband has a way of getting me to cook whatever he wants, so don’t be suprised if you see soups here more often – especially during the cooler months.
I’ve been gluten-free and sugar-free for six years in order to maintain my weight-loss. There are a whole lot of foods I haven’t eaten. Gumbo is one of them. I get a little obsessive when this happens because I don’t know what it’s supposed to taste like. I read about, I call people who’ve eaten it, I compare recipes, and try to find someone who’s eaten it to give me a taste comparison. Luckily, Joe’s had gumbo before and his verdict is that my gumbo is just as good as any he’s had. If you’ve had gumbo, give me your feedback too.
I used turkey kielbasa to make this a little healthier, too. Make sure to read the package carefully – many sausages contain sugar. I found this kielbasa at Whole Foods – made by Wellshire – and it’s all natural, free of preservatives, and free of antibiotics. Most importantly, it tastes great.
A little about roux…
I made lots of roux before going gluten-free so this I know about. Gumbo can be thickened with many things – this is thickened with roux, or an equal mixture of butter or oil and flour used to thicken sauces. You have to cook the roux long enough to get rid of the flour taste, keeping in mind that you either want the roux to be light or dark. A light roux is used for white sauces and soups where a dark roux is used for darker dishes. For this soup, you want a darker roux.
A regular gluten roux comes together and forms a ball when you’re cooking it. Not so with gluten-free rouxs. It cooks and thickens but doesn’t stick together. The first time I did it, I worried a little that it wouldn’t work but it works just fine. I got a little obsessive about this, too, and found a video by our beloved Gluten-Free Girl and Chef which will show you what it should look like. If you’re worried, watch the video.
This soup eats like a meal – I served it with mustard green from my CSA (The okra came from there, too. Veggies are so much better farm-fresh!) and skillet cornbread. Gumbo is usually served with sourdough or french bread and sometimes rice but I needed a good gluten-free shortcut. Cornbread was good enough for us.
Give me your feedback, please!
Two items – if you haven’t taken the poll in the brown sidebar, please do! I want to know what recipes you want to see here. Also, I started linking to the tools I use in the kitchen because I get so many e-mail inquiries. I thought it would be easier to just show you. Of course, if you buy it Amazon gives me a little money too. Something big like four percent. Maybe someday I’ll be able to cover my hosting costs.
This post is linked to What Can I Eat That’s Gluten-Free at The Gluten-Free Homemaker.
This recipe is adapted from Cuisine At Home’s Splendid Soups.
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 12 ounces turkey kielbasa, cut into ¼ inch slices
- ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup sorghum flour
- ¼ cup sweet rice flour
- ½ medium onion, diced
- 3 stalks of celery, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced or grated on a Microplane
- ¾ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 (14.5) ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
- 6 cups homemade chicken stock OR organic low sodium chicken broth
- 4 sprigs of fresh parsley
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups of sliced okra – fresh or frozen
- kosher salt to taste
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a 6 quart enamaled cast-iron dutch oven over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook for several minutes. Once chicken has cooked about half-way, add kielbasa and continue cooking until browned, about 5 – 8 minutes total. Remove meat with a slotted spoon to a bowl and set aside.
- Next, make the roux. Put remaining ½ cup olive oil in the same pot and heat. Test it by dropping a pinch of flour in – you want it to sizzle. Then, add sweet rice and sorghum and cook, stirring constantly, for about five minutes. You want the roux to be roughly the color of peanut butter. Add onion, celery, green bell pepper, garlic, cayenne pepper, and white pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until veggies are soft, about 5 minutes. Everything is going to stick together and look like it’s gone south. Don’t worry. Just keep stirring. And, don’t worry about the brown stuff on the bottom of the pan.
- Make a bouquet garni by tying together the parsley and thyme with kitchen twine. Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, bouquet garni, and bay leaf. Stir well, cover, and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes.
- Add okra, reserved meats, and simmer for another 5-8 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt. Add more cayenne pepper if desired.