PALEO FILE SEAFOOD & ANDOUILLE GUMBO
So my amazing girlfriend (now wife) is at Kessler AFB, Biloxi MS for 10 weeks this summer. Which sucks, but fortunately she had a long weekend last weekend, and New Orleans is only an hour and a half away from her, so I flew down to meet her there. After an awesome breakfast Saturday morning (she had an alligator omelet) we went for an early morning walk in the French Quarter, and stumbled upon Crescent City Cooks. Its a cool little culinary store, but more importantly they do cooking classes. Saturdays menu was Jambalaya, File Seafood Gumbo, Bread Pudding, and a praline. While none of these are to paleo in their traditional form, I was on vacation, and you can’t NOT have those things in New Orleans. AND they were amazing! They said they have gluten free flour and with enough notice they can probably accommodate most dietary restrictions. Although if you have issues with peppers, creole cooking is probably just not going to work.
When I got home, the memory of that gumbo came with me and the cravings started. I thought about the recipe, and the only thing NOT paleo is really the roux. So I started my research. Thank you to the Civilized Caveman Facebook group for lots of feedback on some of the recipes I saw online. And off I went finding the right stuff.
Also I forgot the tomatoes, and it was good without them, but I think the slight acidity they bring to the pot is needed. I just added more hot sauce.
Start by chopping the celery, peppers and onion, or trinity as it is called.
This needs to be done and good before you start the roux. Once you add the flour to the fats you cannot stop stirring for more than a second. No really it will burn! and you will have to start all over. So keep stirring!
My pot was too small, but the heavy cast iron was needed to help insure from burning, so after I added the trinity I moved it to a large pot and rinced the smaller one with some of the stock to make sure I got all of the flavor.
The orginal recipe from Crescent City Cooks is below, and as you can see it’s already pretty paleo. Besides modifying the roux I added Andouille sausage, and I couldn’t get any small crabs so I left them out of mine. They add a lot of flavor, so if possible use them!
Paleo File Seafood and Andouille Gumbo
2 Medium onions, diced
2 medium to large green bell peppers, diced
6 stalks of celery cut lengthwise into 2 or 3 strips and diced
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 cup high heat fat (I used 1/2 bacon grease and 1/2 lard)
1/2 lb Andouille sausage, cut into quarters lengthwise and diced
2 tablespoons Creole seasoning (I used punch daddy), divided
2 Tablespoons hot sauce (Crystal is preffered) divided
2 small blue crabs, halved
6-8 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can diced tomatoes
2 quarts stock, or water (I used 1 quart chicken and 1 quart shrimp)
3 bay leaves
2 lbs shrimp, peeled, deveined
1 cup parsley, chopped
1 lb crabmeat claw and or lump (not imitation) (Claw has better flavor and is usually cheaper)
2 tablespoons file powder (or more of less to taste)
creole or cajun seasoning to taste
hot sauce to taste
Dice the pepper, onion and celery (trinity) and put it near the stove
In a large heavy pot heat the fat(s) over medium high heat
When hot stir in the flours and reduce the heat to medium low.
Stir CONSTANTLY over medium low heat.
The roux needs to be constantly tended to, Do not leave the pot! Cook until the roux turned Nutella brown. This gives the gumbo the nice nutty taste.
When the roux is dark enough, add a cup or 2 of the celery, onions and peppers. When the roux gets this dark it can burn easily. You have one to two seconds of not stirring. The trinity stops the cooking, and buys you time. This is why you need to have it close in the beginning.
Add the rest of the trinity.
Add 1 tablesppon each of the creole seasoning and a couple of heavy pinches of salt.
When the trinity has cooked down some, 5 to 10 minutes, add the small crabs.
Cook for 5-10 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook for a minute.
Add the diced tomatoes and stir everything together.
Add the stock, and bay leaves.
Cover the pot until it boils and then move the lid slightly to let steam escape.
Reduce heat and Simmer for 1 hour.
Add the chopped shrimp, and 1 tablesppon each of the creole seasoning and hot sauce to a large bowl and stir to coat.
Set aside to marinate.
10 minutes before serving, bring back to a boil.
Add the shrimp parsley and green onions.
Cook until the shrimp is just done and add the crab meat to heat through.
Remove from heat and add the file powder.
Add spices and hot sauce to taste.
Some people don't like the taste of file, so you can have the powder at the table and allow everyone to add to their taste.
I eat white rice on occasion, but I tried this first over the cauliflower rice. It was OK, but white rice cooked in chicken stock was a lot better.
Adapted from Crescent City Cooks
Crescent City Cooks File Seafood Gumbo recipe
Roux: 3/4 cup oil (canola) 3/4 cup flour
Gumbo: 2 Medium onions, diced 2 medium to large green bell peppers, diced 6 stalks of celery cut lengthwise into 2 or 3 strips and diced 6-8 cloves of garlic, minced 3 green onions 1 cup parsley, chopped 2 gumbo crabs, halved 1 tablespoon salt 1 can diced tomatoes 2 tablespoons file powder (or more of less to taste) 2 quarts seafood stock, or water 2 lbs shrimp, peeled, deveined and tossed with hot sauce and Cajun spices 1 lb crabmeat claw and or lump (not imitation) 3 bay leaves creole or Cajun seasoning to taste hot sauce to taste
In a large heavy pot heat the oil. When hot stir in the flour. Stir CONSTANTLY over medium to medium low heat. The roux needs to be constantly tended to, Do not leave the pot! Cook until the roux turned Nutella brown. This gives the gumbo the nice nutty taste.
When the roux is dark enough, add the celery, onions and peppers. Add the Cajun or creole seasoning and a couple of heavy pinched of salt. This will help with the caramalization. When the trinity has cooked down some, 5 to 10 minutes, add the gumbo crabs. cool for 5-10 minutes. add the diced tomatoes and garlic and stir everything together.
Add the stock, salt, Cajun or creole spices, hot sauce and bay leaves. Cover the pot until it boils and then move the lid slightly to let steam escape. Simmer for 1 hour.
10 minutes before serving, add the shrimp parsley and green onions. cook until the shrimp is just done and add the crab meat to heat through. Remove from heat and add the file powder. Or you can have the powder at the table and allow everyone to add to their taste.
Add spices and hot sauce to taste.
Serve over rice