I am ridiculously happy. I was recently doing my weekly shopping and found Pillsbury Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix near the regular flour at Publix. It isn’t the fanciest of grocery stores, but it’s generally a step above of say Food Lion. Long story short, this gluten-free flour mix already contains xanthan gum which mimics the elastic nature of wheat gluten. Happy day, I can now make a gluten-free roux that doesn’t break down. The gumbo was still thick after re-heating to take pack for the kids’ lunch.
And even better than staying thick? It’s a one-to-one substitution. Please note, you may notice that the roux doesn’t get as dark as a traditional roux. I gave up on a dark roux after 15 minutes. I was starving and really didn’t want to crank up the heat only to have to start over if the roux began to break down, so it was a blonde roux gumbo, but it was gluten-free which made everyone happy.
Shortcut – substitute frozen trinity and onion / pepper seasoning mix instead of chopping everything, for a much faster prep. (Yes, working full time and commuting the chauffeur the kids does cause me to take some short cuts some nights. Please don’t ask how often we have breakfast for dinner, now be quiet and eat your scrambled eggs)
: Chicken Gumbo
- 3 – 5 lbs bone-in, chicken (chicken thighs work perfectly)
- 2 large onions, sliced
- 3 celery ribs, with leaves, chopped
- 2 bell peppers, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 lb andouille sausage
- 2 Tablespoons Cajun or Creole seasoning -please check that the brand you use is gluten-free
- 2 quarts cold water
- 1 lb frozen okra pieces
- 2 tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 cup gluten-free flour mix that contains xantham gum
- 1/3 cup bacon fat or vegetable oil
- OPTIONAL 1 tsp salt (to taste)
- file seasoning (when serving)
- Hot Sauce (Tabasco or my favorite Louisiana Hot Sauce)
- In a large pot (6 quart minimum) add the water, chicken, sausage, onion, bell pepper, celery, garlic, and Cajun seasoning. Bring the water to a boil, immediately reduce to a simmer and cook over low – medium low heat for 2 hours.
- Remove the chicken, cool enough to handle, and debone, discarding the skin and bones. Return the chicken to the gumbo along with the okra and tomatoes.
- In a heavy skillet heat the bacon fat or vegetable oil until hot, reduce the heat to low and sprinkle in the flour and stir carefully to begin making roux. Cook the roux until the color is somewhere between peanut butter and milk chocolate, depending on your preference.
- Whisk the roux into the gumbo and cook over low heat (at a simmer) for twenty minutes.
- Taste and add additional seasoning, if necessary.
- In each bowl, stir in a scoop of cooked rice, a pinch of file, and a dash of hot sauce.
Preparation time: 20 minute(s)
Cooking time: 2 hour(s) 30 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 8
Boneless chicken alteration
Use 2 -3lbs, weighed before cooking.
Brown the chicken and dice. Skip to the roux making portion of the recipe and make the roux, then add the onion, celery, bell pepper, and garlic directly to the roux, just as you would in shrimp étouffée. Then slowly stir in the chicken stock you have substituted for water and then add the Cajun seasoning, bay leaves, chicken, okra and tomatoes. Stir well and simmer for 20 minutes.