What’s For Dinner?

Sorry another adventures in the kitchen post.

Hubs is back.  SO to welcome him back, I made one of his favorites…Seafood Gumbo.

Before you start telling me that isn’t vegetarian, let alone vegan…spare me.  We are considered Pescetarian.  While we abstain from red meat, poultry, and the other white meat, fish gets the green light.  We eat it sparingly, but it does open up the dine out options considerably!  Can we get back to the post now?

Gumbo.  I discovered this recipe in time for Christmas, and it was AMAZING!  (Not to worry, I will share the recipe…in a minute).  I did make a few changes to it….surprise surprise, but I think the changes just made it better.  In all honesty I’ve been craving it since, oh January 2nd, so when I casually mentioned it to McD, my heart soared when his reaction was “OHHHHH YEAHHHHH”.  Not only is it scrum-diddly-umptious, it makes A TON!!! Which translates to leftovers, which means fewer days in the kitchen, oh and did I mention it’s a crock pot meal?  This is the all around winner in my book!

So we made the Gumbo.  Assembled it in the morning and let it cook all day.  About 4 o’ clock, Hurricane comes into the kitchen.

“Mom”

“Hmm?”

“Whens the Gumballs gonna be ready?”

“The what?”

“The gum balls.”

“I don’t have any gum balls babe.”

“Yes you do”

“Ummmm, no…I don’t”

“But you said you had gum balls”

“Uhhhh nope….when did I say that?”

“Mom…..” insert whiny voice here

“Hurricane” insert fed up mock whiny voice here

“Yes you do…you SAID we were eating them for dinner”

Me with the dawn of recognition on my face…thinking <lightbulb> “Ohhhhhhhhhhhh….the Gumb-OH?”

“Yeah the Gum-BALL”

Here’s me and McD, exchanging the parent glances and stifling laughs…

“It’s just about done bud….go play Sonic, we’ll call you when its ready”  (translation: go out of hearing range so we can laugh at you!)

There you have it…tonight, whats for dinner is Gumball Soup!  Yum!

Want some gum ball soup of your own?

Here’s the recipe.  I adapted this from one of my favorites…Paula Deen.  If you’ve ever cooked with Ms. Deen, it aint PD unless it’s got a pound a buttah and a quart a cream, but I did par it down a bit, and just because we are cheating with the fish doesn’t mean I throw our entire “veganish” lifestyle out the window.  Lets just say tonights dinner is a treat!

Savannah Seafood Gumbo

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups onion, chopped
  • 1 cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups broth
  • 1 tablespoon chicken base (I use a chicken-less base—it’s called Better Than
  • 3 cups water
  • bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/3 cup dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons House Seasoning, recipe follows
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes seasoned with garlic, basil, and oregano or 2 cups fresh diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups sliced Cajun-style fresh link sausage- I used veggie links
  • 2 cups cut  frozen okra – WELL RINSED!!!
  • 1/2 lb peeled 41-60 ct shrimp
  • 1/2 pound crabmeat
  • 1/2 lb white fish–whatever is on sale
  • 1/2 lb bay scallops

This is what you do…..

Make your roux with the oil and flour.  Stir until light (milk chocolate) brown, and somewhat fragrant.  Add onions, garlic and celery and sauté.

Throw that in the crock pot.  Add your broth, and base and stir, add water, stir again.

Add Bay leaves, parsley, thyme, lemon pepper, cayenne, House Seasoning, Worchestershire,and tomatoes.  (House seasoning is below)

From here, you just turn the crock pot on low and let those flavors simmer together through out the day.

Here is where I prep the seafood and sausage, but it goes back in the fridge…at this point anyway.

Also, here is where I start my rice, in the rice cooker.  Do you know the knuckle method?  Lemme share….

Pour some rice in the cooker…don’t worry about measuring it, just pour until it looks good.  Trust me on this one.

Peel 2-3 cloves of garlic and add.

Throw in 2T butter or margarine

Prepare a cup or so of chicken-less broth.

Pour that in first.  Now shake your dish back and forth so that you even out the rice.  Add water a little at a time.  When your pointer finger inserted into the water, just BARELY grazing the rice, is wet to your first knuckle, you have enough water.  Now, throw it in the cooker and your done here.

On the gumbo, PD calls for “House Seasoning”  It’s an all in one, always nice to have around the house, so let me hand that off to you….

House Seasoning

1 cup salt-table salt, not the Sea Salt…it doesn’t work very well

1/4 cup black pepper

1/4 cup garlic powder

Mix together in a big bowl, store in an airtight container.

Now, about half hour to an hour before eating….go ahead and add the shrimp, crab, fish, okra, scallops, sausage….throw it all in there. Then continue to cook until shrimp shows pink.  If you are using meaty sausages, you may need to cook longer, or perhaps pan cook them prior to adding them.  Just please check for doneness.  Raw meat does not a good meal make!

Ok, ready to eat?  remove the bay leaves and…

Pour Gumbo over a bed of rice and enjoy!!!

Now lets see if the critics approve…

Wheres the Gumballs??

Good stuff mom!

Are you serious?

Open Wide!

Here goes nothin...

 

And there you are…your very own GUMBALL SOUP!!

Until next brag…..

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