Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

Okra is my favorite vegetable so naturally, I love gumbo. That silky, sumptuous texture that good gumbo has? It’s all okra, so unfairly maligned. Served over rice, I could eat this hearty stew all winter.

  • 1/2 cup avocado oil
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 pound andouille sausage, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 4 slices turkey bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 3/4 to 1 cup flour, depending on how thick you want the gumbo to be
  • 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1/3 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 canned whole, peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 10 ounces okra, trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • Cooked white rice, for serving
  • Hot sauce and file powder, for serving
  1. Heat 1/4 cup oil in an 8-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Working in batches, season chicken with salt and pepper, and add chicken to pot. Cook, turning once, until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add sausage and turkey bacon and cook, stirring, until bacon is browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to plate with chicken.
  2. Add remaining oil and reduce heat to medium-low. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, until this mixture is the color of dark, reddish caramel and forms a roux, about 8 minutes. Add celery, onion, and bell pepper and cook until soft, about 6 minutes. Add thyme, cayenne, tomatoes, garlic, and bay leaf and cook for 3 minutes. Return chicken, sausage, and bacon to pot along with the okra and stock and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, okra is tender, and gumbo is thickened, about 30 minutes. Remove chicken from pot and let cool for 5 minutes. Remove and shred meat, then stir back into gumbo. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with rice, hot sauce, and file powder.

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