Backstreet Cafe Seafood Gumbo
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil, divided
- 2 1/2 cups sliced okra
- 1 1/2 to 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 1/2 tablespoons pressed garlic (about 3 cloves)
- 2 quarts seafood or fish stock (see note)
- 1 or 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne peppers
- 3/4 teaspoon ground thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano
- 1 pound (36- to 42-count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 1/4 pounds fish such as pollock or cod, cut into small chunks
- Heat 1 to 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat; add
okra and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes to prevent stringiness.
- Remove okra with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add remaining oil to skillet and heat until it is just at the smoking point;
gradually add flour, whisking constantly to avoid burning, and cook until mixture
turns dark brown to make a roux. The darker the roux, the richer the taste,
but do not let it burn.
- Add onion, bell pepper and celery, a little at a time, and continue stirring
while mixture cooks.
- Stir in garlic.
- Remove from heat.
- Bring stock to a boil in a large kettle. Stir roux into seafood stock, a
little at a time, stirring constantly.
- Add okra, bay leaves, salt, peppers, thyme and oregano. Simmer until okra
is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Add shrimp and fish. Cook for 2 minutes or until shrimp is pink and fish
Yield: about 1 gallon
To make seafood stock, combine shrimp shells and 2 quarts water in a large
kettle and simmer 30 to 45 minutes over medium heat. Strain shells; reserve stock.
Source: Backstreet Cafe, Houston, Texas