I haven’t lived in South Louisiana my entire life, though I have been here for almost 20 years. Nathan, on the other hand, has lived here most of his life. I learned very quickly after moving to the New Orleans area that Gumbo and Jambalaya were staples of life along with water, shelter, and other lesser foods.
This is Nathan’s Vegan version of Okra and Sausage Gumbo. The sausage is the Field Roast brand. You can use any of the flavors, but for this recipe we like the Chipotle Sausage (my personal favorite is the Smoked Apple Sage). The other thing I learned several years after living in New Orleans about Gumbo from a co-worker was that many New Orleanians put a scoop of potato salad into their Gumbo. I was skeptical, in fact, I thought he was joking and trying to get me to believe it. I tried it and loved it. Now Nathan and I make potato salad every time we have Gumbo.
- 2 pounds fresh okra cut into pieces
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup finely chopped onions
- 1/2 cup finely chopped bell peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 4 cloves of minced garlic
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 1/4 tsp smoked salt
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 or 3 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp File’ Seasoning
- 2 quarts water or vegetable broth
- Your choice of rice for serving
- 1/2 cup olive oil (or other oil of your choice)
- 1/2 flour
Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add okra and saute’ for approximately 10 minutes. This will reduce the “okra slime”. Add the tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic and continue to cook, stirring often, for about 10 more minutes or until the okra and other vegetables are soft and the okra slime has disappeared. Add the smoked salt, smoked paprika, dried thyme, file’ seasoning, and water or broth and stir thoroughly.
Next, make your roux
Combine oil and flour in a heavy bottom pot and stir constantly over medium-high heat using a wooden spoon until the roux is approximately the color of a copper penny.
Add the roux to the pot and stir thoroughly. Finally, add bay leaves, stir and bring pot to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
We do not add the Field Roast sausage to the gumbo pot. Instead, we saute the sausage links in a small pan, cut them into pieces and add them directly to the bowl when the gumbo is served. Serve the gumbo over rice and add a large spoon full of homemade potato salad and your prepared Field Roast sausage pieces, DELICIOUSNESS AND LOUISIANA SPICINESS GUARANTEED!