Alligator Sausage Gumbo…Yumbo!
OK, this is a good one if you have a cold, if you are cold, or are just plain sick of cold weather. My brother brought up some alligator sausage from New Orleans for me to try. Half way up the Mississippi in St. Louis we don’t get ‘gator meat. I was quite pleased though with how good it was. I was even more pleased when I made this great spicy gumbo to celebrate.
There are a lot of fresh ingredients to this dish. I used fresh tomatoes, garlic, poblano pepper, red bell pepper, onion, celery, chicken breast and the alligator sausage. Okra could only be found frozen here this time of year but it turned out fine. In addition I used a quart container of beef broth, a can of diced tomatoes with the juice, a cup of white rice, and spices: One tablespoon paprika, one heaping teaspoon cayenne pepper, one half teaspoon black pepper, a tablespoon parsley flakes, and one teaspoon of salt. Finally I added just a dash of liquid smoke. I diced the vegetables and in a large pot I added about two tablespoons of olive oil then gave the vegetables a bit of a saute. Next, when the vegetables began to get a little brown on the edges it was time to add the spice.
Now, the spices began to bloom and some liquid was called for right away. In went the beef broth and about a cup and a half of water. The next thing to add was the rice so in it went…about a cup. While that got back to boiling I needed to get the sausage and chicken started.
They both needed cook a bit before adding to the mix. So in another skillet. I diced up the sausage into bite size pieces and let them sizzle a while. When they were a little browned I added them to the pot. The sausage was blended with pork and that allowed it to render a bit of fat. The fat was used to cook up the chicken breasts and once all of the meat was done, I diced up the chicken and added it too.
The last thing to do was to add a can of diced tomatoes, some sautéed mushrooms, and a dash of liquid smoke. I cooked everything until the rice was tender and let it simmer a while longer.
I’m sure the neighbors had to wonder what on Earth was going on over here because the smell of wonderful food was overflowing the whole house. I couldn’t stand it anymore, I had to dive into a big bowl of the stuff! It was amazing! So amazing, so warm and spicy, I had to have a tiny bit more.