I was taught to cook Cajun food from a great friend who grew up in Breaux Bridge, LA......the heart of Cajun country. I visit every year and he takes me to his home and we cook for a solid week. He was also kind enough to give me all of his family recipes. I share with you now....below is the Gumbo. You can use any combo of meats in this recipe.
As far as roux....not many secrets really, just be careful not to burn it. Be prepared for it to take around 30 minutes to make. It must be stirred CONSTANTLY during this process!! No phones, TV, or potty breaks allowed! My buddies family swear they can detect 11 distinct stages of roux coloring. I have translated this to familiar colors.
I have mastered the high heat method that Paul Prudhomme uses but it took a while and many ruined batches of roux. Keep this in mind...the longer a roux is cooked the LESS thickening it will do. In the recipe below, the roux is rather dark so it does almost no thickening. One last tip...I keep my chopped veggies close by and use them once the roux is the proper color. This is critical if you are using cast iron! The cast iron holds the heat so well that the roux will cook long after the heat is turned off. When you add these veggies...the cooking stops...BUTTT be aware....it will splatter and sputter so stand clear. That is why it is called Cajun Napalm!!
Okra and file are local types of ingredients. This family used neither in all of their cooking, but many folks love using it in everything. Not a veggie person, so NO gumbo z'herbes!! LOL
About the best Cajun page on the internet can be found here........ http://www.gumbopages.com/recipe-page.html
OK, here is the recipe for Gumbo. Let me know if you seek any other Cajun delights...I don't have that many, but the ones I have are tremendous!!
Couzan Billy's Chicken and Andouille Gumbo
3/4 cup Oil
3/4 cup Flour
1 pound Andouille sausage
2 medium Onion(s), chopped
4 stalks Celery
2 Bell pepper, red, chopped
1 tablespoon Butter
2 teaspoon Garlic
2 teaspoon Thyme
1 teaspoon Black pepper
4 Bay leaf(s)
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
4-5 cups Chicken stock
4 Chicken thighs
Make the roux to a deep copper color. Set aside. Saute sausage, onion, celery, pepper, and seasonings in butter.
Add chicken stock and chicken thighs and simmer for 10 minutes.
Bring to rolling boil and add roux.
Simmer for at least another hour.
Retrieve and discard the chicken thigh bones.
Serve over rice.
Serves 8 dinner portions or 16 appetizer portions.