From Couchon in New Orleans


Chef Donald Link of Couchon in New Orleans

Chef Donald Link of Couchon in New Orleans, photo by Scott W. Clemens

1 1⁄2 c. flour
1 1⁄2 c. oil
2 c. diced onion
1 c. diced green pepper
1 c. diced celery
3 T. chopped garlic
1 1⁄2 gal. pork or chicken stock
1 1⁄2 lbs. okra sliced crosswise 1⁄2 inch wide and seared in lard until lightly browned
2 c. cooked blackeyed peas (cook in chicken stock with large pieces of mirepoix that can be removed after cooking)
2 c. bacon braised greens (collards or mustards cooked in bacon and onions with sugar, vinegar, hot sauce and salt and pepper)
2-3 lbs. Pork butt (raw weight) fully smoked and chopped
2 T.
1 T. Thyme
1 T. Chile powder
1 T.
White pepper
1 T. Paprika
2 T. Black pepper
1 T. Cayenne pepper
3 each Bay leaves

Make a dark roux using the oil and flour. (Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen has some good roux techniques, advice and gumbo recipes).
As soon as roux is the right color (just past red and turning back to brown but not scorched or smelling really burnt) add the diced vegetables and garlic.
Add the stock and stirring very frequently bring up to a simmer. Simmer for about 1hour stirring lots. Skim all of the fat that separates out.
Taste the gumbo. It should not taste pasty and like the roux anymore. If it does you may need to add more stock up to 1⁄2 gallon. This is different every time depending on the exact measurement of flour, strength of starch in the flour, degree of cooking of the roux among other things, so add the stock in stages and let it cook and come together before adding more.

When the gumbo is the right consistency add the okra, blackeyed peas, greens, pork and seasoning. Allow to return to a simmer and adjust the seasoning. Serve with steamed rice or potato salad

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