Authentic Creole Chicken and Smoked Sausage File' Gumbo




Ingredients

1 pound smoked sausage, such as andouille or kielbasa, cut in half horizontally, then crosswise 1/2-inch thick pieces

4 pounds chicken thighs, skin left on

2 tablespoons SOLA Cajun seasoning

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 cup "Miletello's Mudd" prepared dark dry roux flour.

2 cups chopped onions

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped bell peppers 1/2 green 1/2 red

2 tablespoons chopped garlic

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cracked black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne

3 bay leaves

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

9 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth, heated

1/2 cup chopped green onions

2 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves

2 tablespoons file'

Hot brown or white rice for serving

Hot sauce for serving

Directions

FOR PREPARING THE ROUX

Distribute 3 cups of flour evenly over the dry bottom of a large iron skillet or heavy Dutch oven. A sheet pan can be used as well.
Place skillet in a 400 degree oven for an hour to an hour-and-a-half. Stir well every 15 minutes so that the flour will brown evenly. If using a sheet pan be Shure to "chop" the plour back and fourth, up and down whilst mixing from the bottom of the pan to the top. Note: toward the end of the cook time (maybe the last 20 minutes or so), you will need to stir or chop and flip more frequently. Let your nose dictate the time. The kitchen will be filled with the wonderful nutty fragrance of roux… but you don’t want it to burn.
Once it has reached the color of dark brown dirt, remove the skillet from the oven and let it cool. Note: The roux will actually darken in color when added to oil, or when added directly to a gumbo.


In a large enameled cast iron Dutch oven or large pot, cook sausage over medium-high heat until well browned, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. As sausage starts to brown add Trinity vegetables and garlic. Continue to cook med-low till transparency is present.remove from pan, leaving rendered fat.

Season the chicken heavily with SOLA Cajun seasoning, and add in batches to the fat remaining in the pan. Cook over medium-high heat until well browned, 5 to 6 minutes, turning once or twice. Remove chicken and drain on paper towels. (Do not attempt to remove drippings or clean pan at this point.)

Combine 1/2 cup oil and the "Miletello's Mudd" roux flour in the same Dutch oven over low heat. If the roux looks too loose, add 1 tablespoon flour.

Stirring constantly with a whisk over medium-high heat, make a dark brown roux, the color of chocolate.

Add the onions, celery, and bell peppers, garlic and reserved sausage, salt, cayenne, and bay leaves. Stir and cook for 2 minutes. While stirring, slowly add the warmed chicken stock, and cook, stirring, until well combined. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.

Add the reserved chicken to the pot and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally and skimming off any fat that rises to the surface.

Remove the pot from the heat. With tongs or a slotted spoon, remove chicken from the gumbo and place on a cutting board to cool slightly. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Pull the chicken meat from the bones and shred, discarding the bones, skin and any fatty bits. Return the meat to the gumbo. Heat 15 minutes. Stir in the green onions and parsley. Taste and adjust with SOLA seasoning if needed.

Chefs note..Save your chicken bones and fat for a wonderful chicken stock for your next of gumbo, ettoufee, red beans and rice..Etc!