Picture this: You’re standing in the kitchen, surrounded by delicious aromas, while a cauldron of spicy gumbo bubbles away on your stovetop. The dark roux envelops all the flavors of chicken, andouille sausage, smoked ham, and okra in a smoky, thick sauce that’s almost addictive. As the steam dances around you, bringing up the flavors of green peppers and celery, you take a deep breath and savor the smells. This is gumbo. This is why you need to try my Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo Recipe.
Trust me when I say that once you’ve tried this recipe, it’ll become your go-to dish when entertaining guests or comforting yourself on chilly evenings. It’s a downright crowd-pleaser that combines complex flavors yet is easy to prepare.
But before we dive into the recipe itself, let me introduce myself. My name is Mean Chef, and I have been cooking for over 20 years. My love for gumbo started with my first visit to Louisiana years ago, where I had my first taste of this rich concoction at a roadside diner. Ever since then, I have experimented and perfected the recipe to create the perfect balance of spice and flavor.
In this article, I’ll share my secrets with you so that you can replicate my signature dish in your own kitchen. Trust me; this is not something that you want to miss out on!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Listen up, folks, because I am about to tell you why you’re going to fall head over heels for this Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo recipe.
First of all, gumbo is a classic Southern comfort food that never goes out of style. It’s rich, flavorful, and hearty – perfect for warming up on a chilly day or impressing your dinner party guests. And this recipe takes it to the next level with its unique blend of ingredients.
We start off with a Holy Trinity base of yellow onions, green bell peppers, and celery – the backbone of any good gumbo. Then we add in tender chunks of chicken meat, savory chicken andouille sausage, and smoky ham to create complex layers of taste and texture.
But wait, there’s more. We also throw in plenty of okra to give the dish a unique flavor and a slight sticky texture that pairs perfectly with the cooked long-grain rice.
And let’s not forget about the spices – bay leaves, fresh ground black pepper, cayenne, and salt all work together to create an explosive burst of flavor that will make your taste buds dance.
This gumbo recipe is versatile too – you can substitute or add shrimp or mix in another protein according to your preference.
So why will you love this recipe? Because it brings together all the best things about Southern cuisine under one roof. It’s flavorful, hearty, and perfect for any occasion from weeknight dinners to special occasions. Give it a try; I bet you’ll be hooked on this dish in no time!
Here are the ingredients you need to create this meaty and flavorful gumbo recipe:
- 1 lb chicken meat, cooked and shredded
- 1 lb smoked ham, chopped
- 1 lb chicken andouille sausage, sliced
- 1 lb okra
- 2 green bell peppers, chopped
- 4 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 yellow onions, chopped
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp cayenne
- 1 tsp salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions
- 2 cups chopped green bell peppers
- 1 1/2 cups chopped celery
- Vegetable oil (about 1 to 1 1/4 cups)
- Cooked long-grain rice for serving
- Green onions and parsley for garnishing.
All these ingredients combine perfectly to make this tantalizing gumbo recipe!
The Recipe How-To
Now, let’s get into the good stuff – how to make this delicious Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo recipe. Here are the steps you need to follow:
Step 1: Make Roux
- In a Dutch oven, heat vegetable oil (1 cup) over medium heat.
- Sprinkle in all-purpose flour (1 1/4 cups) and whisk constantly to combine.
- Keep whisking and cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the roux reaches a dark brown color.
Step 2: Sauté Holy Trinity
- Add minced yellow onions (2 cups), diced green bell peppers (2 cups), and diced celery (1 1/2 cups) to the roux.
- Cook the mixture for 5-7 minutes on medium heat until softened.
Step 3: Add Seasonings
- Season with salt (to taste), cayenne (1 tsp), freshly ground black pepper (1 tsp), and dried thyme leaves (1 tsp).
- Mix everything together until evenly distributed.
Step 4: Add Meat and Sausages
- Add diced smoked ham (2 cups), diced chicken meat (2 cups), and sliced chicken andouille sausages (1 pound) to the pot.
- Stir all the ingredients together until well combined.
Step 5: Simmer with Liquid Ingredients
- Pour in low-sodium boxed/canned/natural chicken broth (4 cups).
- Toss in sliced fresh or frozen sliced & thawed okra pods (2 cups).
- Add whole dried bay leaves (2).
- Raise the heat to high to bring everything to boil; then reduce heat to low-medium.
Step 6: Cover and Let it Simmer
- Cover the Dutch oven with a lid.
- Allow gumbo mixture to simmer until vegetables are cooked and soft, flavors have melded, and sauce has thickened. This should take between 30 minutes to an hour or more depending on your preference.
Step 7: Adjust Seasoning Then Serve
- Remove bay leaves from gumbo mixture.
- Taste test gumbo, adjust seasoning if necessary before serving hot over a bed of white or brown rice.
Enjoy your Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham, and Okra Gumbo hot off the stove!
Substitutions and Variations
Are you feeling adventurous and want to put our recipe to the test? Here are some substitutions and variations you could try:
– Seafood Gumbo: Swap chicken sausage with shrimp, crab or other seafood of your choice for a delicious seafood gumbo.
– Vegetarian Gumbo: Omit the chicken and ham and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. Add in more okra, bell peppers or substitute it with your typical mix of veggies known as “The Holy Trinity” in Cajun cuisine (onions, celery, green bell pepper).
– Crockpot Gumbo: To make mealtime hassle-free, try slow-cooker gumbo by following this easy-to-use recipe with slow cooker chicken breasts.
– Cajun Chicken Sausage Gumbo: This recipe is traditionally made with Andouille sausage. But if you can not find it locally, look for another type of smoked sausage such as kielbasa or chorizo. Or go ahead and use your favorite brand of chicken sausage to switch things up.
Remember that every substitution comes with its unique twist so experiment for a flavor that suits yourself the best!
Serving and Pairing
Once your Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo is ready to serve, it’s time to start thinking about what to pair with it. This gumbo recipe is hearty and packed with flavors, so I suggest keeping the sides simple. A handful of cooked long-grain rice is the perfect accompaniment to this Cajun classic.
To further enhance the experience, you can sprinkle some chopped green onions and fresh parsley on top of the gumbo right before serving. This will add a pop of color and freshness to the dish.
If you’re looking for more of a substantial side, why not try some French bread or cornbread? These bread options are great for soaking up all that delicious Cajun sauce.
When it comes to drinks, you have options. The complexity of this dish pairs perfectly with a lighter red wine like Pinot Noir or Beaujolais. For beer lovers, a crisp pale ale or lager work well too – they cut through the richness of the gumbo.
This dish also pairs well with non-alcoholic beverages such as sweet tea or lemonade. The sweetness in this drink balances out the spiciness of the gumbo.
Remember that gumbo is a rich dish, so keep serving sizes modest. When hosting a party, consider serving this as a starter or alongside other small dishes rather than an entrée.
Now that you have these pairing tips in mind, give this Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo a try at your next gathering!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Listen, you don’t always have to be slaving away over the stove. I know you have a few other tricks up your sleeve. So, let me tell you: You can make the gumbo ahead of time! Yep, you heard me right. Whip this baby up a day or two ahead of the party and store it in your refrigerator. Trust me, the flavors will meld together, making it even more incredible. When it’s time to serve, reheat it slowly on low heat for about 30-40 minutes on the stove or in a crockpot.
To store leftovers, place the gumbo in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. If you want to make it last longer, freeze it instead; it will keep well for up to 6 months. To reheat leftovers from the fridge or freezer, reheat slowly on low heat on the stove or in a microwave-safe container.
Now, let’s talk about rice. You can cook long-grain rice ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months. When reheating rice from the fridge, add a splash of water and cover with plastic wrap before microwaving. If reheating from frozen, defrost first before microwaving.
When serving your gumbo and rice, be sure they are warmed through before spooning them into bowls. Finally, garnish with sliced green onions and chopped parsley for that finishing touch that’ll make your guests think you’re a pro chef!
Tips for Perfect Results
As a home chef, I understand the importance of achieving the perfect gumbo flavor and texture. That’s why I have compiled these tips to help you make the Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo Recipe into a masterpiece.
Firstly, it is important to understand that the base of this gumbo is the roux. It sets the foundation for the whole dish. Cook the roux on medium-low heat for at least 30 minutes, continuously stirring until it reaches a peanut butter color.
Another crucial aspect of making a delicious gumbo is the holy trinity – onions, celery, and bell peppers. When cooking them in vegetable oil, remember to reduce heat to medium and cook them slowly for 5-7 minutes until they appear soft before adding other ingredients. This will help develop their flavors thoroughly.
When it comes to making gumbo thickener using all-purpose flour or any type of flour, always follow the recommended quantities in this recipe. Or else, you may end up with a sticky mess or watery soup.
For maximum flavor, use quality meats like chicken andouille sausage and smoked ham pieces that are well cooked before being added to the pot. Pre-cooking means that when added to gumbo pan along with vegetable mix and cooked roux, they will blend uniformly with other flavors.
If you want more spice, add more cayenne pepper at your discretion (Note that cayenne is very spicy).
Lastly, do try out different rice types based on your preference when serving gumbo soup with cooked rice- as short-grain rice will give your plate an extra sticky texture while long-grain rice would be less so but offer a great mouthfeel.
With these tips in mind, you are sure to prepare an appetizing dish that will have everyone asking for seconds!
As I wrap up this article, I can confidently say that this Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo recipe is nothing short of phenomenal. If you are a fan of bold flavors and Cajun cuisine, then this gumbo recipe should definitely be on your to-do list.
Every step in the recipe has been carefully crafted to ensure maximum flavor and authenticity. From using the holy trinity (onions, bell peppers, and celery) as a base to adding in the perfect combination of meats and spices (chicken sausage, smoked ham, cayenne pepper, and more), the result is a stew that will tantalize your taste buds.
Whether you are serving guests at your next party or just looking for a comforting meal for your family, this gumbo recipe won’t disappoint. Impress everyone with this wonderful interpretation of an authentic Cajun dish.
So go ahead, run through this easy-to-follow recipe and taste that hearty gumbo soup crowned with cooked long-grain rice. You’ll never forget the magic of Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo – it’s sure to become one of your favorites!
Mean Chef Chicken, Andouille, Ham and Okra Gumbo Recipe
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
- 1 1/2 cups chopped celery
- 1 1/2 cups chopped green bell peppers
- 1 lb okra, either fresh or frozen and cut into pieces
- 1 1/2 lbs hot smoked sausage, such as andouille or kielbasa, cut crosswise into 1/2 inch slices
- 3/4 lb smoked ham, cut into small cubes or 3/4 lb ham, nugget cut into small cubes
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 3/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 quarts chicken stock or 3 quarts chicken broth
- 3 cups cooked chicken meat
- 1 tablespoon Pickapeppa Sauce
- 1 cup chopped parsley
- 2 bunches chopped green onions
- hot sauce, to taste (optional)
- 4 cups cooked long-grain rice, accompaniment
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat and stir in the flour, sprinkling a little at a time and whisking inches Whisk slowly and constantly for 20 to 25 minutes to make a dark brown roux, the color of chocolate.
- If you get black specks in your roux it is burned and you will have to start over.
- Add the onions, celery, okra and bell peppers and continue to stir for 4 to 5 minutes, or until wilted.
- The mixture will be pasty and fairly dry.
- Add the sausage, ham, salt, cayenne, pepper, and bay leaves and stir well.
- Cook, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the stock or broth and stir well to combine with the roux mixture.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low.
- Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.
- Add the chicken and cook just until the chicken is heated through, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley, Pickapeppa Sauce and green onions.
- Ladle into deep soup bowls over rice.
- Serve with hot sauce, if desired.
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Anna is a culinary expert who specializes in grilling delicious BBQ dishes. She also enjoys sharing her recipes and experiences with her foodie community on her blog. She’s the total package for any backyard barbecue!