Beer — just like wine or water — makes a noble addition to your cooking stock. Food is all about flavor, so the reduction of a compatible liquid is a welcome taste enhancer to any recipe.
- 4 sticks unsalted butter, melted, or 2 cups olive oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 2 medium yellow onions, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 4 quarts poultry stock, heated
- 2 cans of amber beer (one can is for the gumbo, one can is for the chef)
- 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- Kosher salt to taste
- 1 pound Andouille, or smoked sausage, sliced 1/2-inch thick
- 3 to 4 pounds chicken or turkey, roasted, deboned and cut into 2-inch pieces
- Louisiana hot sauce to taste
- Rice, potato salad or sweet potatoes for serving, depending on your family tradition
- First make a roux. Heat the butter or oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven. Whisk in the flour and cook until foaming. Cook on low, continuously stirring until the roux is a mahogany color, about 45 minutes to an hour. If it scorches, start over. There’s no saving it. You’ll see the little black flecks, and then you’ll smell it. Wah.
- Stop short of very dark because it will continue to darken when the trinity of bell peppers, onion and celery is added. Add the trinity and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Heat, then whisk into the roux the hot poultry stock and beer, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and stir in the Creole seasoning, black pepper, crushed red pepper, chili powder, thyme, chopped garlic, bay leaves and kosher salt. Cook, skimming off the fat as necessary, an additional 45 minutes.
- In a skillet, brown the sausage and drain. Add the sausage and chicken or turkey to the stockpot, adjust the seasonings, and serve the gumbo with cooked white rice, potato salad or sweet potatoes.
- TIP: Brown the sausage first in about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil. Remove the sausage from the oil and set aside, then use the sausage-seasoned oil in your roux oil mixture for a flavor boost.
- Portion out and freeze any leftover gumbo for a bowlful of love when you need it the most.