. (zeeohee) wrote in vegancooking,

Gumbo, pt 2

Since nobody knew whether fishy seitan could pass for crawfish (and after talking to my Louisiana-dwelling Daddy, who told me that crawfish isn't fishy at all), I decided to make "shrimp" and "sausage" gumbo to satisfy my Cajun cravings. When I make this again (and it's definitely a "when," not an "if," because it was a big hit with me and my boyfriend), I'll leave out the veggie shrimp: the texture weirded me, and it didn't pick up any of the shrimp boil seasonings.

Vegan "Shrimp" and "Sausage" Gumbo

1/4 c canola oil
3/8-1/2 c flour (I used whole wheat)

The Holy Trinity:
half a large onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1/2 c celery, diced

4 c.+ water or stock (I used 4 c. water, but only because my pot couldn't hold any more)
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
10 or so oz. frozen okra
a cup or so frozen corn
2 Tofurkey brand Italian sausages, sliced into rounds
1 package "Vege King Prawns"
2 tsp ground thyme
Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning (or salt), to taste
Tabasco, to taste
cooked brown rice, enough to serve however many people are going to be partaking of your Cajun fest

First, you make a roux. Actually, I broke this cardinal rule of Cajun cooking, and first I boiled my veggie shrimp in homemade seafood boil. I grew up using Zatarain's, but here's my approximation (note: this didn't actually flavor the veggie shrimp, but I'll definitely use it again for seitan; the smell was perfect):

1.5 tsp mustard seed
1 tsp coriander seed
2-3 bay leaves
1 tsp dill seed
1 tsp whole allspice
1.5 tsp whole cloves
.5-1 tsp whole black peppercorns

Mix all in a tea bag, tea ball, or piece of cheesecloth. Boil with whatever you're trying to flavor.

Okay, then I made the roux. This is done by cooking the flour and the oil together, constantly stirring, just as if you were starting to make gravy. You should have your "trinity" already diced and ready to go when you start your roux, because you have to keep stirring it. There are many different types of roux, from "blonde" to "chocolate", and you can feel free to adjust the flour-to-oil ratio to your taste (it's somewhere in the vicinity of 1:1, usually). Don't let the flour burn! It'll get dark, but it will start to smell rich, not burnt.

When it's a nice color, toss in your trinity, and cook until the peppers and onions start to get soft. Then add in your water or stock, the can of tomatoes and their juices, okra, and corn. Stir that all up, then add the thyme, Tony Chachere's (or salt), the sausages, and the shrimp.

You'll notice that once the okra thaws, your gumbo will suddenly seem to coalesce. Good! Now simmer it for about 10 minutes to make sure everything's nice and warm, then serve in a bowl over rice. Here's where you add the Tabasco, or not. I like about 10 good shakes from the bottle. Talk about good!
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