Easy Chicken Gumbo
Can’t make it down to the Big Easy for Mardi Gras? Join in the festivities in your own way. Curl up in front of the fire with a bowl of delicious homemade chicken gumbo.
Make it quickly and easily with my Americanized recipe. I use frozen cooked diced chicken, frozen gumbo veggies and Uncle Ben’s ready rice. It doesn’t get any easier than this. Really!
Creole and Cajun Food
Visitors to New Orleans make sampling the food a top priority. But how do you know the difference between Cajun and Creole cuisine. It is becoming difficult because they are quickly becoming one and the same. Food historians have had to focus on regional differences to do so.
Both cuisines are heavily influenced by Spanish, African, and Native American cooking and slightly influenced by West Indies, German, Irish, and Italian cooking. Creole cooking evolved in the City of New Orleans during the 1800s.
Today, Creole dishes vary from home to home as cooks use different thickening agents. A thickening agent is known as a roux and can include anything from the African vegetable okra to crushed sassafras leaves. Creole roux is made from butter and flour. Cajun roux calls for oil or lard and flour.
Cajun is more of a country way of cooking than Creole. Cajun cooking evolved in the Lousiana backcountry and uses locally farmed and trapped meat, rice, beans, and pork fat. Butter was not widely used in the past because of a lack of dairy products in the area. Cajun food has more French and Southern roots than Creole food.
Gumbo Verses Jambalaya
Gumbo is thin-stocked and soup like while jambalaya is more of a stew. Gumbo’s use of tomatoes also distinguishes the dish as Creole. Cajun dishes generally don’t include tomatoes. Jambalaya is more of a protein entree served with rice on the side. It is made with a thickening, or roux, seasonings, and veggies.
Both gumbo and jambalaya may use any combination of chicken, sausage, and shellfish such as shrimp or crayfish.
Healthy Chicken Gumbo
Okra has been added to the list of foods that food scientists have found to help lower cholesterol. Of course, we have known the many benefits of tomatoes for a while now. Other gumbo veggie ingredients include corn, red bell pepper, and celery. I use wild brown rice instead of white rice.
Easy Chicken Gumbo Recipe
- 1 Cup Precooked chicken, Diced
- 1 10 Ounce can Chicken Broth
- 1 10 Ounce can Diced tomatoes with green chillies
- 2 TBS Olive oil
- 2 TBS Flour
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 Twelve-ounce package Gumbo veggies, Frozen
- 2 tsp Cajun seasoning
- 1/2 tsp Minced garlic
- 1/8 Hot pepper sauce
- Make a roux in the bottom of a dutch oven with the oil and flour. Cook until caramel-colored.
- Add all the rest of the ingredients except the rice.
- Bring to a boil and boil for three minutes.
- Reduce heat and simmer for one hour.
- Add the ready rice during the last ten minutes.
Want to make the “real” Creole chicken gumbo? Watch the famous chef and funny guy Justin Wilson do it.