Light Seafood Gumbo

About Gumbo

Of all the dishes in the realm of Louisiana style cuisine, “gumbo” has remained the most well known and well loved. Gumbo crosses all class barriers, appearing on the tables of the poor as well as the wealthy. Although ingredients might vary greatly from one cook to the next, and from one part of the state to another, a steaming bowl of fragrant gumbo is one of life’s cherished pleasures.

According to the Southern Foodways Alliance, Gumbo is often cited as an example of the melting-pot nature of Louisiana cooking, but trying to sort out the origins and evolution of the dish is highly speculative. The name derives from a West African word for okra, suggesting that gumbo was originally made with okra. The use of filé (dried and ground sassafras leaves) was a contribution of the Choctaws and, possibly, other local tribes. Roux has its origin in French cuisine, although the roux used in gumbos is much darker than its Gallic cousins.

Since Mardi Gras takes place in the same month as Heart Health month, we wanted to share a recipe that keeps the flavor but cuts out the salt and excess calories.
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Light Seafood Gumbo
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Light Seafood Gumbo
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  1. Spray a large, non-stick skillet with non-fat cooking spray and set over medium-high heat. Add in garlic okra, bell pepper, onions, and celery. Cook until veggies are tender, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  2. Make the roux by adding the butter to the skillet, and then add in the flour; stir until blended. Continue to cook, stirring constantly until the flour is well browned, but not burned, about 8-10 minutes.
  3. Slowly drizzle in the broth into the skillet, continuously stirring to remove lumps, and bring to a slow simmer. Add in the thyme, bay leaves, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and tomatoes.
  4. Add the cooked vegetables back into the skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes. Stir in the shrimp and crabmeat and simmer until shrimp are cooked, about 3-5 minutes.
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