Sunday, November 27, 2011

Gobbledy Good Turkey Gumbo

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends.  I enjoy taking the some dedicated time to reflect on the many ways God has blessed me and my family.

I was also particularly excited to prepare the feast this year because I haven't been in the kitchen much lately with all of the home renovation going on.

We, of course, had the traditional roast turkey and all the trimmings.  On Thanksgiving night, I made a turkey stock with the carcass and lots of onions and celery and simmered it for several hours.  I knew I wanted to make a gumbo with some of the turkey leftovers.

Traditionally, gumbo is made with a nice, dark roux.  Roux (pronounced "roo") is nothing more than a combination of fat (vegetable oil, in the case of gumbo) and flour in roughly equal proportions.  Roux is used to thicken and flavor a sauce or soup.  The lighter the roux, the milder the taste and the more thickening power it lends to the finished dish.  The roux for gumbo is dark, sometimes as dark as mahogany-colored.  I like mine to be a little darker than peanut butter, because it is difficult to get the darkest color without burning it.

Traditional roux made with oil
After all of the rich food from Thanksgiving, I decided to make a lower-fat version of gumbo that I have recently perfected.  A typical gumbo recipe has a cup of oil: that's more than 1900 calories!  We certainly didn't need those calories after all of the pumpkin pie and stuffing we have consumed lately.  My mom and her ancestors have French Canadian roots, and my grandmother used to make roux for an apple gravy (that goes with duck) using this method.  I decided to try it for gumbo, and it was a great success!

First, brown a cup of flour in a cast iron skillet in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes, stirring frequently.  The color you are going for is somewhere around the color of peanut butter.  Note that this is very...shall we say...aromatic!  Make sure you have your exhaust fan on because it does have quite a nutty smell.

I browned 2 cups of flour because I plan on making the duck with apple gravy recipe sometime around New Years.  The browned flour keeps for several months in an airtight container.

As you can see, there are quite a few lumps, so sift the cooled flour.

Next, combine 2 cups of cold turkey stock and add it to the 1 cup of browned flour, making a slurry.  Set aside.

Next, saute your veggies (called the Holy Trinity in New Orleans: onions, celery, and bell pepper) in about a tablespoon or two of canola oil for about 10 minutes over medium heat or until clear.

Add a couple of cloves of minced garlic and cook for another minute or two.

Next, add the turkey stock and bring to a simmer.  Homemade stock is really the way to go with gumbo and soups, but you could use canned broth in a pinch.

Next, add the roux slurry to the bubbling stock and whisk well.

Add a pound of your favorite smoked sausage, sliced, and simmer for about 15 minutes..  I used Chisesi green onion sausage, which is my favorite New Orleans brand.

 If you want to cut the fat even more, you could use a smoked turkey sausage.

Add the leftover roasted turkey chunks (about 2 1/2 cups) and heat through, about 5 or 10 minutes.

If you want, you can also add okra.  I like canned okra because it is "de-slimed" and adds some color and a different texture.  I have previously tried using frozen okra and just don't like how it changes the viscosity.  Or leave it out, your call.

Serve over steamed white rice and garnish with green onions.

Reduced Fat Turkey and Sausage Gumbo
(click here to print)

8 cups homemade turkey stock (use leftover carcass) or canned low sodium chicken broth
2 Tbsp. canola oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup flour
1 lb. smoked sausage, sliced
2 1/2 cups leftover roasted turkey chunks
1 tsp. creole seasoning or to taste
14 oz. can sliced okra, optional
several dashes tabasco sauce

Brown the flour in a cast iron frying pan in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes.  Stir frequently until evenly browned and about the color of peanut butter.  Remove to cool, then sift.  Combine the dry browned flour with 2 cups of cold turkey stock and whisk to a slurry.  Set aside.

Saute the onion, celery, and bell pepper in oil over medium heat until clear, about 10 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute or two.  Add the remaining 6 cups turkey stock and bring to a simmer.  Add the slurry and whisk well, then add the sausage and simmer on medium low for about 15 minutes.  Add the turkey chunks and heat for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, then add the creole seasoning, tabasco, and okra (if using).  Heat through and serve over fluffy white rice.

Gobble it down!

Linking to:

Hunk of Meat Mondays
Mangia Mondays
Tuesday Talent Show


The Café Sucré Farine said...

First of all, I LOVE that poster/picture with the Scripture - just beautiful! And I am so excited about this lower fat way to make a roux - my husband's favorite dinner is my gumbo but I don't make it often because of exactly what you said - it calls for a CUP of oil! I can't wait to try this - thanks so much for sharing!
Hope your enjoying your newly remodeled home!

Paula {Salad in a Jar} said...

I have always used frozen okra but think I will try canned okra next time. I take it you don't care for your soup to be thickened at all. Right?

KB said...

Looks yummy. Thanks for sharing with Simply Delish.

Vicki V @ said...

Actually, Paula, I do like my gumbo on the thick side but I don't like the slimy texture that frozen or fresh okra can add to the gumbo. I also don't add file' powder, which is another trick people use to thicken gumbo. I think the starch from the rice and chunkiness of the meat and sausage lends plenty of texture already.

Anonymous said...

Great idea! I've been trying to come up with different recipes for all the leftover turkey, this one looks so good!

Thanks for linking up to Friday Food on!

Pretend Fancy said...

Hi Vicki, thanks for your comment over on my blog it was so nice! We used the Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations Kit (I really need to put that information on that post, so thanks for reminding me!). We used their color called Seaside, and we didn't use the glaze. It's a really pretty gray blue. Even my husband the cynic really likes it. :) And I have never had gumbo and live in the South, I might need to try this!

Gypsy Heart said...

Do you deliver? :-) Oh my, I'd love to have some of this right now. Thanks for sharing the new version!


kitty said...

Thank you so very much for sharing your low fat version of making the roux!! I am anxious to try this!!

carolinaheartstrings said...

This look so delicious and satisfying. Cannot wait to try it out. Come visit us we have a hot sausage dip in the menu today and be sure to come back on Friday 12/2 and register to win a wonderful giveaway from The Shabby Apple.

Miz Helen said...

I would just love to Gobble this great dish down. It looks great! Hope you are having a great week end and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
Miz Helen

Marguerite said...

This gumbo looks fabulous and I wish that I had a big bowl of it, right now! Love your blog and your recipes! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your nice comment!

Jay said...

wow...sounds irresistably tasty...will def be a must try for me..;)
Tasty Appetite

Cherry's Jubilee said...

yummmmmmmmmmmmm! I have never cooked with okra..but I am now tempted too. Thanks for leaving me such a sweet comment! cherry

SnoWhite said...

Looks delicious - very different from our leftover turkey soup! Thanks for sharing this as part of the best recipes of 2011.