This one-pot gumbo is made with chicken, spicy andouille sausage and the holy trinity of Creole cooking — onion, celery and bell pepper.
It’s adapted from a recipe booklet I bought years ago in Charleston, S.C., after taking a low country cooking class at the now-defunct Charleston Cooks. It’s a favorite because it’s so easy to make and offers quick cleanup. Also, it reminds me of one of my favorite Southern cities.
Gumbo typically includes shrimp, but a shellfish allergy in my house mandated I leave it out. It also usually includes okra, a hot weather vegetable that helps thicken the broth. Some find it slimy, and some like it for that. It can be difficult to find in grocery stores but often is in ample supply in Indian markets.
EASY LOW COUNTRY GUMBO
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 Spanish onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound chicken thighs (about 4), cut into bite-sized pieces
2 stalks celery, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 yellow or red bell pepper, diced
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon Creole seasoning
2 cups chicken stock or broth
1 (15-ounce) can fire-roasted tomatoes
½ pound andouille sausage, sliced into rounds
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon sugar
cup corn kernels
8 to 10 okras, sliced
Hot sauce, to taste
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cooked rice, for serving
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
Place butter in large stockpot and melt over medium heat. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add garlic and chicken to pot and cook for 5 minutes.
Add celery and peppers and cook for another minute. Sprinkle flour and Creole seasoning over meat and vegetables and stir well.
Add stock, tomatoes, sausage, thyme, bay leaves and sugar to pot and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes, and then stir in corn and okra.
Cook another minute or two, then add a couple of dashes of hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce and season to taste with salt and pepper.
To serve, place a scoop of cooked rice in a bowl and top with a scoop of the gumbo. Garnish with sliced scallions.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.