If you love oysters and New Orleans cooking like we do, this sausage and oyster gumbo recipe is for you!
It’s full of fresh vegetables, smoky sausage and oysters. The flavors are perfect together; making this one of the best gumbo recipes I’ve ever had.
Do you love Louisiana food? We certainly do. Whether it’s Cajun or Creole; we can’t get enough. I’m talking about recipes like etouffée, crawfish, boudin, jambalaya and gumbo. We live south of New Orleans—Miami—and we can’t seem to find a restaurant that serves good Louisiana cooking.
Our way to solve this deficiency is to cook at home, which usually results in food even better than what we would get in New Orleans. As I’ve mentioned before, we are lucky enough to have access to super-fresh Gulf seafood from Casablanca’s seafood market. This legendary market has boats arriving daily and serves up an astounding array of fresh local seafood right in the heart of downtown Miami.
Unfortunately, the secret is out. Now I have to jockey for a parking space to get my seafood fix and wait forever in lines. Sad me 🙁
To make this heavenly sausage and oyster gumbo recipe, you can use freshly shucked oysters or save yourself the trouble and buy the pre-shucked refrigerated oysters in the seafood section of a good grocery store. Buy some nice Louisiana-style smoked sausage or Andouille and you are good to go—except for file powder. Do you have it? Don’t fret if you don’t. File powder is not necessary for a good gumbo. Even the folks in Louisiana will tell you so. I prefer to add okra in its place. It thickens gumbo just like file would.
The key to making a gumbo is the roux. It sounds like something magical and hard to do when you hear people mention it, but it’s very easy. I have to mention my sister-in-law here because she gifted me an heirloom quality roux spoon. Isn’t it nifty? I never knew they had a “thing” just for this purpose!
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did! Check back soon when I’ll be sharing my favorite recipe for Shrimp Etouffée. What’s your favorite Louisiana dish?
In a skillet over medium heat, brown the sausage well in the 2 tablespoons of oil. Remove sausage from the skillet and set aside.
Using a large heavy pot, melt the butter over medium-low heat. When the butter melts and foams, add the flour. Use a wooden spoon to stir the flour into the butter to prevent any lumps. Continue to cook and stir the roux until it is brown and nutty-smelling, about 15 minutes.
Recipe adapted from Shrimp and Oyster Gumbo by Tyler Florence http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/shrimp-and-oyster-gumbo-with-okra-recipe.html
Add the onion, celery, red and green bell pepper, garlic, Cajun seasoning and thyme to the roux and cook for 10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.
Pour in the chicken stock. Add the okra, tomatoes, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, and then cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 45 minutes, checking and stirring occasionally.
Toss the oysters (and oyster liquor) in the pot and cook another 10-15 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add more salt, pepper and a dash of Tabasco sauce if needed.
To serve: Ladle gumbo in a wide bowl. Top with cooked rice. Sprinkle with green onion or parsley. Don’t forget to place the hot sauce on the table.
Recipe adapter from Shrimp and Oyster Gumbo by Tyler Florence
It’s fitting that my first post of the year is a soup recipe, and this white bean and sausage soup is one of my favorites. I’ve gushed over soup before and I’ll probably do it again. I make one, sometimes two a week because I just love soup. There’s nothing better on a cold winter evening than a delicious broth filled with tender greens, hearty white beans and savory sausage.
Note: when I say “cold” I mean a January 65 degree low in Miami and I’m still in flip flops. That’s all the cold we get in the winter. Don’t hate me.
Did you know January is national soup month here in the good old US of A? It’s the perfect time to bring out the big soup pot with this is a star of a soup. White bean and sausage soup is a comforting, home-cooked meal, but it’s also elegant. A soups like this is deceptively easy to make, only requiring some chopping, a bit of a sauté and a little time on the stove. The result is a hearty, healthy and satisfying meal for the whole family. Serve with warm, crusty bread and a glass of wine, while you imagine you are in Italy. (This Italy fantasy passes through my head every time.)
Ok, I’m finished gushing. Happy new year everyone and may there be more soup in your future.
Serving Size: 6 servings (main course)
Fill a large pot with water and add the dried beans. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow the beans to sit in the water for 1 hour. Drain and rinse beans.
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook until soft, but not brown, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add beans, chicken broth, wine, cheese rind, salt, pepper, bay leaf and rosemary to the pot. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook on low heat for 50 minutes.
Brown the sausage in a skillet and drain on paper towels. Add the carrots and sausage to the pot. If you are using kale, add it to the pot now. Cook another 15 minutes. If you are using spinach or Swiss chard, add to the pot before serving, stirring until wilted and tender. Taste and season with salt and pepper before serving.
This comforting pasta recipe with sausage, butternut squash, spinach and mascarpone cheese was created after a recent trip to visit family for Thanksgiving. The dish hit the spot after arriving home to an empty house (and refrigerator) the night before. Our anticipated 5-hour drive home stretched to 9 hours due to accidents on the turnpike. My 1-year-old son was too little to understand why he was strapped to a chair for so long, so much of our time was spent soothing and distracting him. We finally got home in the middle of the night, and dragged ourselves into bed.
After such a stressful night, we were happy to have a day to relax. But what was there to eat? I scoured my freezer and pantry and found the ingredients for this delicious recipe. I know most people don’t keep a tub of mascarpone cheese in the freezer, but I do. I like to freeze anything that may spoil when we go on a trip. Deli meats, cheeses (sliced and soft), fresh vegetables and leftovers all get frozen. The meats and cheeses defrost just fine, and the vegetables (like whole tomatoes) get tossed into a pasta sauce.
For this recipe, I was lucky to have a fresh, organic butternut squash. Add to that a pack of frozen spinach, Italian turkey sausage and cheese from the freezer. Then I found some pine nuts and pasta from the pantry and I was good to go.
I love the combination of flavors and textures in this pasta recipe. You get the slightly sweet, roasted butternut squash, then the savory spicy sausage. Crunchy pine nuts are the perfect counter to the creamy pasta and spinach. It just all works.
If you happen to have fresh spinach instead of frozen, please go ahead and us it. If you don’t have spinach, a good substitute is Swiss chard or broccoli rabe. Use your favorite type of sausage, preferably spicy or sweet Italian. I used spicy Italian turkey sausage.
Preheat oven to 425° F/220° C
Pour some of the oil on a baking sheet lined with foil. Add the squash, sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Cook for 35-40 minutes, until the squash is soft and nicely browned. Remove from the oven and set aside.
While the squash is baking, heat a skillet and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Add the onion and cook for 8 minutes over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir. Add the spinach and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
Bring the pasta water to a boil. Season the water with salt and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving 1-2 cups of the pasta water to make the sauce.
Pour the hot pasta into a large pot or bowl. Add the mascarpone cheese and 1 cup of the pasta water (add more if necessary to thin the sauce). Allow the cheese to melt and toss. Add the squash, spinach mixture and pine nuts. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve with Parmesan cheese.