Friday, February 26, 2010

Instant Gumbo ala Tony Cachere

Ever since seeing this post by fellow food blogger Homesick Texan (Chicken and Sausage Gumbo), I have been wanting to make gumbo.  I bought all the ingredients such as sausage, chicken, bell peppers, etc and finally got ready to cook gumbo.  No cast iron pot.  No file powder. No this, no that.  Dang.  Luckily, I had ran across this experimental item which is a gumbo mix by Tony Cachere brand, usually known for their seasonings and sauces.  I bought a box since it was on sale and figured it would be worth a hoot.  Here is what the box looks like:
I know that the Iowa Meat Farms on Mission Gorge carries this as well as the dirty rice and red beans and rice version of this mix.  In order to jazz it up a touch, I chopped up red bell pepper and celery to brown in the pot.  I also chopped sausage cubed and peeled/ deveined shrimp for jumping into the pool.  I waited until the gumbo was almost done to add the shrimp since I had smallish sized shrimp and didnt want them to rubberize up.  The verdict?  Decent.  I added the amount of water it called for (4 cups) but to me, it came out bland.  I happen to have the Tony Cachere creole seasonings so I dashed a bit into the pot.  Better, but then it was too soupy for my preferences.  I made a little thickening solution and voila, texture was improved instantly.  I was impressed by the volume of food produced by one modest sized box of gumbo mix.  For what it is, it was ok.  It would be a good fix for someone who either doesnt know how/ doesnt want to make gumbo from bare bones recipe and wait hours or doesnt want to/ cant pay for restaurant entree gumbo.  Again, camera is kinda day I will replace my smartphone and my shoot and point camera. 

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