Seafood Gumbo

4 cups onions, chopped
11/2 cups celery, chopped
11/2 cups bell pepper, chopped
6 cloves garlic, chopped
3 pounds of okra, cut in 1/4-inch slices
1/2 cup of cooking oil
3 Tablespoons Flour
4 quarts shrimp and crab stock
3 large Creole tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup diced ham
1 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon basil
4 bay leaves
4 pounds shrimp, peeled
2 dozen crabs, cleaned and halved
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/2 cup green onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Tabasco to taste
Worcestershire Sauce to taste
Gumbo filé (to be passed or added, to taste)
2 cups cooked rice

In a large soup pot, sauté onions, celery, bell pepper and garlic in 1/4-cup oil. Watch closely so garlic doesn’t burn. In a separate pan, fry okra in remaining oil less 2 Tablespoons for the roux. Okra may need more oil but should be cooked for 20 minutes to help dry it out a little. In a fry pan, heat 2 Tablespoons oil and add flour, cooking until light brown. Add tomatoes to the roux and cook for 10 minutes before adding to soup pot with herbs and ham. After mixing, pour stock into soup pot. Cook for a couple of hours at a simmer. Add seafood, okra and remaining seasonings to pan. Cook for an additional 45 minutes, taste for seasoning. Serve over rice. Pass filé at table or add to pot a couple of minutes before serving. (Gumbo is all about slow cooking to allow flavors to blend; the herbs and seasonings will change according to how good your stock is.)

A Lil’ Taste of Hevin By Kevin
5015 Magazine St.