Delmonico's Seafood Okra Gumbo
- 1 pound gumbo crabs without the legs, rinsed well and quartered
- 1 1/4 pounds andouille or other spicy sausage, sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions
- 1 cup chopped green bell peppers
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- 1 pound small okra, stem ends trimmed and sliced 1/2-inch thick
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 cup lager beer
- 10 cups shrimp or fish stock
- 1 teaspoon liquid crab boil
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup cooled Light Brown Roux, See How To Roux, recipe follows
- 2 pounds medium (26 to 30 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
- 1 pint oysters, with their liquor
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
- Steamed White Rice, for serving
- Chopped Green Onion Tops, for serving
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Place gumbo crab quarters on a small baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside.
Cook the andouille, in batches, in a large stockpot, over medium-high heat until browned and the fat is rendered, about 5 minutes. Remove the andouille with a slotted spoon, place on a paper towel-lined plate, and reserve. Add the vegetable oil to the stockpot and heat with any excess fat from the sausage over medium-high heat. Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery and cook until the vegetables are soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the okra and cook, stirring, until the vegetable has released most of its slime, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, basil, thyme, and bay leaves and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
Add the beer to the vegetable mixture, stirring to incorporate, and then slowly add the stock, stirring well. Add the reserved gumbo crabs, browned sausage, liquid crab boil, salt, and pepper to the stock and bring mixture to a boil. When mixture is at a boil, add the roux, a little at a time and whisking to incorporate. Wait until mixture returns to a boil before adding more roux. When all of the roux has been added, bring gumbo to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer gently for 45 minutes. Using a clean ladle, occasionally skim any impurities or foam that rises to the top of the gumbo.
Season the shrimp with the Essence in a medium bowl. Add the shrimp, oysters, and their liquid to the gumbo, stir well, and cook until the shrimp are pink and just cooked through and the edges of the oysters start to curl, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley. Remove bay leaves before serving.Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Yield: 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch, published by William and Morrow, 1993.How to Roux:
3 cups vegetable oil
5 cups all-purpose flour
Place a heavy, iron Dutch oven, (or iron skillet with deep sides) over medium heat and heat the oil until just smoking. Whisk in flour, a little at a time and cook, whisking constantly, until roux becomes smooth and thick. Continue to cook, constantly stirring with a wooden spoon and reaching all over bottom of pan, until roux darkens to desired color. Be careful not to produce specs of black. The roux must remain an even color throughout process. If specs appear you must start over.
For a Light Brown Roux, cook the mixture, over medium heat for 1 1/2 hours, or until the color of peanut butter. Remove about 1 cup of the light colored roux, cool completely, and set aside for the Delmonico's Seafood Okra Gumbo.
For a Medium Brown Roux, cook the mixture, over medium heat for an additional 30 minutes, or until the color of a copper penny when ready. Remove about 13/4 cups of the medium colored roux, cool completely, and set aside for Emeril's Country File Gumbo.
For a Dark Brown Roux, cook the mixture an additional 35 to 45 minutes. The color should resemble dark chocolate when ready. Remove all of the remaining dark roux from the pan and cool completely. Set aside for the Chicken and Sausage Gumbo.
Yield: about 4 1/2 cups roux
NOTE: The timings for various shades of roux will vary depending on the cooktop as well as the amount of roux made. (A smaller amount will cook in much less time.) If this is your first time making a roux, the slower you cook it, the less likely you will be to burn it. The important thing is to cook the roux to the desired color, as specified above.