Main Dishes

Chicken and Smoked Sausage Gumbo with Chicken Breasts and Okra

I'm not a fan of dark meat chicken, so here is a gumbo recipe with chicken breasts for you! And a homemade roux!

* 2-3 large Chicken Breasts
* 1 lb smoked sausage, sliced in half moons
* 1/2 cup flour
* 1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus about a tbsp
* 6 (about) cups chicken broth or stock
* 1 cup water
* 2 (about) cups cut okra, frozen (more or less to your liking)
* 1 bell pepper, diced
* 2 ribs celery, diced
* 1 large onion, diced
* 2 bay leaves
* 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, plus more for chicken
* Thyme, dried
* Oregano, dried
* Kosher salt
* Pepper
* Cooked white rice
Give yourself plenty of time to prepare this! First. I like okra. The use of okra to the gumbo aficionado is debatable--but this is how I like it. I also like chicken breasts vs chicken thighs. You could, however--and it would add to the flavor--use thighs or breasts with bone-in. If you do use bone-in, skim off any scummy residue that bubbles up. Start by prepping all your veggies. Set aside. Season the chicken on both sides with a light dusting of cayenne, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper. In a medium/large skillet add about a tbsp of oil over medium high heat. Brown chicken for about 5 minutes on each side. Remove chicken, cover and refrigerate until later. In the same pan add sausage in batches browning on both sides. Remove sausage and refrigerate until later. Turn heat off and add water. Scrape pan until all browned bits are removed from the pan. Set aside. Ok. Now you have to concentrate. 20-30 minutes uninterrupted. Consider having a spouse or friend tag in if needed. (Seriously, I've done it) this is the most important step/ingredient. With a large pot or dutch oven and good sturdy wire whisk prepare yourself for the torture of making the roux. Some tips I have learned over the years are: 1. Watch your heat. If it starts to smoke lower your heat to very low for a bit (or remove from heat completely), and then increase slightly again. It will smoke. Just keep a close eye on it and your heat. 2. NEVER stop whisking. Ever. The entire pan. All the time. 3. If you lived in Medieval times, this would be a great weapon I would imagine. Be careful with it. It's nuclear. Don't let water or anything like that splash into it. 4. If you see any flecks of black in it, it's ruined. Throw it out and start over. (I don't mean the tiny browned microscopic bits--that's the flour browning, that's good. I mean any flecks about 1/8 inch or so in size that are black. That's indicative of burnt.) No one ever explained this to me, I had to learn the hard way. 5. You are looking to achieve a "dark roux". Think of the crayon color Burnt Sienna. Google it. 6. Even when you remove the pan from the heat, it continues to cook for a bit. Be ready with your prepped veggies. 7. To me. And I'm sure everyone is different, but a ready dark roux smells like buttered--almost burnt--popcorn. Ok. It's really not all that bad. And when you are done, you will feel so accomplished! Call everyone you know and brag. You deserve it! Last tip: You can make a large batch of


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