Sunday, October 20, 2013

The world's least authentic gumbo!

Long time no blog, you guys. I got distracted having a life. I apologise profusely for this. It won't happen again.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I picked up a bag of okra at the farmer's market on a whim. Why? We just don't know. I don't even like okra. So it sat in my fridge about 10 days, getting blacker and slimier until one day this past week I found myself having a minor breakdown, hugging Malory, my stuffed spherical dog, and sobbing uncontrollably.

Fast-forward about an hour: my adviser (let's call him the Eminent Gentleman), who is a candidate for sainthood, was walking me through my evening and ordered me to cook something to take my mind off life. The more ambitious and time consuming the better. And so using what was left of my okra along with the help of a long forgotten package of Beyond Meat from my freezer, this recipe was born.

So here we are with a new and improved vegan chicken and okra gumbo loosely based on this recipe: ( You will need:

  • 8 oz tempeh andouille*
  • 1 cup flour (any kind will do)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 5 green onions, sliced (white parts only)
  • 4 sticks celery, 1/4 inch slices
  • 2 green bell peppers, 1/2 inch chunks
  • 1 red bell pepper, 1/2 inch chunks
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 cups no-chicken stock
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 T jerk seasoning
  • 2 T dried thyme
  • 1 T pimentón
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 pound okra, sliced
  • 3/4 pound "chicken", sliced (I used Beyond Meat. Alternately, I suggest Terry's white seitan)
  • Green parts of green onions, sliced (for serving)
In a 5 quart pot, whisk together the flour and oil over medium heat. Keep whisking periodically until it's dark brown (~45 minutes). In the meantime, prepare the andouille.

When the roux is dark brown, stir in the green onions, celery, bell peppers, and garlic and cook until the peppers are soft, stirring frequently. Add the rest of the ingredients up to the okra, including the tempeh, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for an hour.

Stir in the okra and "chicken", and cook another 15 minutes or so until the okra is cooked through. Serve garnished with the green onions.

*For the tempeh andouille, crumble 8 oz tempeh into a pan with 1 t of oil, stirring frequently until browned. Add water to cover, the spice mix from the PPK seitan sausage thread (, and about 1 t salt, stir, and boil until all is absorbed.

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