One-Pot Cookery

Duck & Andouille Gumbo

December 7, 2015

There are nearly as many recipes for gumbo as there are Cajuns. A lot of ‘em are made with okra, but this gutsy, smoky-rich sans-okra version from Atlanta chef Ford Fry, is my favorite. Fry’s roux mixes Creole stylings (a lighter hued butter-flour roux) and Cajun traditions (roux made with lard or oil and flour and cooked to a deep, dark brown.) Put some music on and be patient–it takes a while for the flour and fat to brown to the deep hue that gives this gumbo its full flavor. Serve it over white rice with snipped scallions and Ford’s Potluck Garlic Bread. And any leftovers? They’ll taste even better next day. Cheaters note? When I can’t get to a duck, I’ve made this with chicken wings and legs and it turned out just fine!

Duck & Andouille Gumbo
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 1 whole fresh duck cut into 8 pieces (keep the extra bones as well. Good Chicago-area sources for fresh duck are the Harrison Poultry Farm on Waukegan Rd. in Glenview, and Paulina Market in Chicago.)
  2. 8 ounces good-quality andouille sausage, sliced
  3. Salt and cayenne pepper to taste
  4. 3⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
  5. 1/3 cup canola oil
  6. 6 Tbsp butter
  7. 1 large or 2 small poblano pepper(s), seeds removed and finely diced
  8. 1 large yellow onion, peeled and finely diced
  9. 1 ½ cups celery, finely diced
  10. 3 to 5 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
  11. 2 qts good-quality chicken broth or stock
  12. 2 bay leaves
  13. 1/8 cup smoked paprika
  14. 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  15. 1⁄2 tsp cayenne pepper
  16. 1/8 cup Worcestershire sauce
  17. 2 to 3 Tbsp Crystal hot sauce (or Tabasco sauce, in a pinch)
  18. Kosher salt to taste
  19. Pot of steamed, long-grain white rice
  20. Green onions, chopped fine, for garnish
Potluck Garlic Bread Ingredients
  1. 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  2. 2 cloves fresh garlic put through a garlic press, or, finely minced
  3. 2 Tbsp Italian flat leaf parsley, finely minced
  4. 2 ½ tsp kosher salt
  5. 1/2 a large baguette
  6. 4 squares white or brown butcher paper (or use parchment paper) & butchers twine
Brown meats
  1. Season the duck generously with kosher salt and lightly with cayenne pepper. Using a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat, brown the duck and reserved bones. When browned, place duck to the side. In the same skillet, brown the sausage. Turn off heat but keep the fat in the skillet
Make roux
  1. Using a the same skillet over medium heat, add the oil and flour to the fat already in the skillet and whisk until smooth. Continue whisking until the roux is slightly lighter than dark chocolate. Immediately remove from the pan or skillet and set aside.
Saute vegetables
  1. Using a large soup pot over medium high heat, melt the butter and saute the peppers, celery, onion and garlic. Cook until soft; about five minutes. Add the chicken broth and heat to boiling. Reduce heat to a simmer and whisk in the reserved roux and the remaining ingredients (including the duck and sausage) with the exception of the salt. Once the duck pieces are fully cooked, remove them from the gumbo and cool slightly. Pick the meat off the bones, slicing large pieces into bite-sized bits, and set aside. Simmer gumbo for about an hour. Check seasoning; season to taste with salt and more hot sauce if you like. Add the reserved duck pieces and chill soup overnight.
Make potluck garlic bread
  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Mix all ingredients but the bread. Slicing down vertically, cut numerous slits into the bread about ½ inch apart, without slicing all the way through the bread. Spread the soft butter mixture into the slits. Cut the loaf into 4 pieces. Wrap each piece with butcher/or parchment paper and tie with butchers’ twine. Bake in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes just before serving.
  2. About 45 minutes before you’re ready to serve the soup, scrape off the solid fat which has risen to the top and heat the gumbo slowly. Serve with steamed white rice, snipped green onions, and potluck garlic bread for sopping.
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