Sunday, February 03, 2013

Weekend Cooking 2/3

Each weekend, Beth Fish Reads hosts Weekend Cooking.  This is perfect for me since I love food and cooking almost as much as I love books!

The weather turned a bit colder this week, so we had a lot of cold-weather comfort foods like soups and stews.  I surveyed the meager contents of the fridge and pantry Monday and made a simple Chicken Stew with Dumplings - a favorite at our house.

I made my bimonthy trip to Trader Joe's on Tuesday which takes a lot of energy, so we had a quick meal that night with Trader Joe's Chipotle Chicken Skewers and Cuban Black Beans on the side with Yellow Rice. This is one of our favorite easy Trader Joe's meals. I would love to hear about other people's favorites.

Wednesday, I made a big pot of Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo, one of my own recipes (see recipe below), with left-overs for the next night.

And yesterday, I made another family favorite, New Mexican Pork Stew, another of my own inventions.  Tonight, of course, is Superbowl, so we have lots of fun appetizers planned, including my husband's famous Buffalo Chicken Tenders.

Hope you have enjoyed some good cooking and great food this week!
Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 bag (about 8 oz.) frozen cut okra, thawed
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons flour
3 cans (14 oz. each) chicken broth
1 can (14.5 oz.) petite diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (optional)
1 bay leaf
1 package (12 oz.) chicken or turkey Andouille sausage (like Trader Joe’s brand) *
1 pound uncooked, peeled shrimp
4 cups cooked brown or white rice

* You can substitute 1 package (16 oz.) reduced-fat smoked sausage instead of Andouille sausage. 

1.     Heat oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Sauté onion, celery, bell pepper, okra, and garlic until soft and tender. 
2.     Add flour and stir until heated through (about 1 minute).
3.     Add the rest of the ingredients, except shrimp and rice, and bring to a boil.
4.     Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 20 minutes.  Add shrimp and simmer 5 more minutes or until shrimp is cooked and pink.

Serve in a bowl, with 1/2 cup rice added to each serving.

This gumbo is mildly spicy, but if it’s too much spice for your family, you can reduce the amount of cayenne pepper or substitute reduced-fat smoked sausage for the Andouille sausage.

© 2009 Suzan L. Jackson (May not be distributed or reprinted without written permission from the author)


  1. We love the spicy! This gumbo sounds great and really easy.

  2. This sounds good, but I'm not a big fan of sausage. I wonder how it would be to leave it out? (This is why my family prefers to let my husband cook the meals and have me stick to desserts!)

  3. Laurie -

    The kind of sausage I recommend here (chicken or turkey sausage) is not at all greasy like regular sausage - I don't know if that's what you don't like but you might try it.

    But sausage is certainly not required in gumbo - there is usually some combination of chicken, sausage, or all types of seafood, so you can use whatever type of meat you want in it.


  4. Shrimp and sausage - I must try that. Have a good week.

  5. The gumbo sounds yummy amidst a whole week of good eating!

  6. I like your gumbo, because it does not contain any exotic or--for those of us who live far from the ocean-expensive ingredients.

  7. Your gumbo sounds yummy, and you have reminded me it's time for a Trader Joe's trip.