Spicy Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

I’ve never made any Cajun or Creole food, so I figured it was about time to experiment.  This is a Cajun-style recipe because the base of the gumbo is a dark roux and the aromatics are the trinity of onion, green pepper and celery.  This recipe is based off the “Spicy Seafood Gumbo” from Emily Ansara Baines’s “The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook,” although I added sausage, forgot to buy celery and the store didn’t have any okra.  Okra is an awesome vegetable, you should add some if you have it.  But anyways, this is a pretty easy and turned out pretty delicious. DSC_0298 Spicy Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 sticks celery, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup clam juice
  • 2 tbsp seafood seasoning, I used some crab/shrimp/crawfish boil seasoning I found at the grocery store
  • 2 tbsp Louisiana-style hot sauce
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (less if you want less spice)
  • 2 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 sausage of your choosing, I used boudin sausage made of pork and pork liver
  • 1 box of rice, I used Zatarain’s brand Dirty Rice Mix

Start by boiling water for the rice and prepare per the box directions. Heat the butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat.  Take a wild guess at what I used… DSC_0284 THE DUTCH OVEN DUH. When the butter is melted, add the flour and stir with a fork or whisk.  I have this super nifty flat whisk and it rules at making a roux.  It’ll initially foam up a bunch like this: DSC_0285 So the tricky part about making a roux is that it’s so easy to burn it’s insane.  When you’re doing this part, make SURE you’re constantly stirring and watching it.  I stopped for 10 seconds to take a picture and ruined my first attempt; had the whole house smelling like burnt popcorn and you DON’T want that in your food, it’ll taste naaaasty. Just keep stirring.  Slowly it’ll start to get golden. DSC_0288 And it’ll get a little brownish… DSC_0290 Keep stirring constantly, you want your roux to be as dark as possible without having any burnt bits. DSC_0291 Keep going until it’s EVEN MORE brown.  DO NOT STOP STIRRING seriously it’s not fun to stir that long and burn it. DSC_0293 Continue reading

Hot and Sour Soup

Let’s just collectively agree that we’ll overlook the months it’s been since I’ve last posted.  I was traveling a bunch for work and bought a house and had to move!  Those are valid excuses, right?  RIGHT?!  But just look at that thing!

I mean, look at that awesome thing!

Okay, I suck, but it’s a new year now and I’ve got a sweet-ass new kitchen to cook in, so here’s hoping I can start posting with more frequency.

In case you’ve been living under a rock, or like, in Miami or San Diego, the two places in this country that are not frozen tundras, IT’S REALLY COLD OUTSIDE.  Polar VORTEX WHAT EVEN IS THAT.  THAT SOUNDS LIKE A HORROR MOVIE.  Even here in the hell fires of Texas, yesterday’s high temperatures only reached the mid-30s.  There’s ICE outside DURING THE DAY.  That’s like freaky New England weather and I thought I left that shit behind.

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I CAN’T EMPHASIZE THIS ENOUGH. ICE. IN TEXAS.

Enough, Mother Nature!  (But seriously you can’t even go outside in Canada without getting frostbite.  NOT COOL.)

While it’s still cold, all I ever want is soup.  Hot soups, cold soups, ALL OF THE SOUPS.  And since I figured I can’t ALWAYS make Tom Ka Gai (https://thegirlwhoate.com/2013/06/19/tom-ka-gai/), I decided to move onto another Asian soup:  Hot and Sour!  I used THIS recipe:  http://food52.com/recipes/25530-joanne-chang-s-hot-and-sour-soup and it was delicious.

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Hot and Sour Soup

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 4 green onions, white and green parts, minced
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 lb firm tofu, cut into cubes
  • 5 mushrooms (I used button, but any sort should still be delish)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2/3 cups rice vinegar
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp Sriracha (less if you want it less spicy, more if you want to be crying)
  • 2 eggs

Continue reading