Saturday, July 7, 2012
Gumbo. A week ago I didn't even know what Gumbo was...well, I had vague images shrimp in a soupy stewey concoction that would involve a lot of mysterious spices...or was that jambalaya? Then Emeril began making appearances. Now, I don't have much to do with Emeril since early on in the little kitchen, when I tried to make what I seem to recall as a vegetable stock. I consulted Emeril and the Food Network. That recipe ended up involving about 80 ingredients and a trip to the produce market which not only overwhelmed the grocery budget but the bicycle basket as well. Live and Learn.
I lept into my newest kitchen challenge as I do with any creative venture: procrastination by googling it to death. I now know more about Gumbo and the Cajuns and okra and the Creoles and sassafras and roux than any normal person should know.
All roads seemed to lead to The Food Network...which I tend to resist these days...where I scrutinized the top 3 Gumbo recipes. #1 Paula Deen. I don't go there. #2 Emeril. #3 Alton Brown.
And apologies to Emeril (his variations of gumbo dominate the top of the 152 recipe search) but I ended up coming back to Alton Brown. His method of baking the roux intrigued me and the dismembering of whole shrimp stirred up the adventurous side my kitchen OCD. Stay tuned on that one.
Lesson learned: Don't attempt your first Gumbo from scratch, after work, if you plan on eating it before midnight. That should of been a no-brainer but did I let the 3 hour cooking time deter me?
It's clearly clear who the dummy is in this scenario.