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Mardi Gras Authentic Cajun Gumbo

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I learned to both love and cook Cajun food over the years. This chicken oyster gumbo is one of my favorites and is perfect for your Mardi Gras celebration this March 4th!

What You Need:

(Makes: 20 servings or 1 & 1/4 cups each)

6 quarts of water

1 chicken (5 pounds), cut up

2 large onions, quartered

4 celery ribs, cut into 3-inch pieces

6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons of salt

1 teaspoon of garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon of poultry seasoning

1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon of pepper

1/4 teaspoon of white pepper

1 cup of canola oil

1 & 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 pound of Andouille sausage links, chopped

2 pounds of sliced okra

2 pints of shucked oysters

3 tablespoons of gumbo file powder*

Hot cooked rice

What to Do:

STEP 1) Place the first 11 ingredients in a stockpot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 & 1/2 hours.

STEP 2) Remove the chicken and allow to cool. Strain the broth, discarding vegetables; skim fat. Remove meat from bones; cut chicken into bite-size pieces and set aside. Discard bones.

STEP 3) In the same pan, cook and stir oil and flour over medium heat until caramel-colored, about 14 minutes (do not burn). Add finely chopped onion; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Gradually stir in broth. Bring to a boil.

STEP 4) Carefully stir in the sausage and reserved chicken. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Stir in okra and oysters. Simmer, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes longer or just until okra is tender. Stir in file powder. Serve with rice.

STEP 5) Happy Mardi Gras & Enjoy!

*Note: Gumbo file powder is used to thicken and flavor Creole recipes, is available in spice shops. If you don't want to use gumbo file powder, combine 2 tablespoons each cornstarch and cold water until smooth. Gradually stir into gumbo. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

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