Laissez les bon temps rouler!
Mardi Gras is Tuesday, so let the good times roll with this tasty creole dish!
Etouffee, which translates to “smothered” or “suffocated” is similar to gumbo, but with a thicker sauce. I’m guessing the point is that thick sauce smothering that tasty shrimp, chicken and sausage.
Etouffee is said to be pretty popular in New Orleans and the bayou region of Louisiana. Perfect for celebrating Fat Tuesday.
The most difficult part of this recipe is the roux, the combination of fat and flour that thickens the sauce. Some of the other reviewers said theirs turned dry and hard, so they shortened the cooking time and added the chicken broth early.
Luckily, I was making this for a big family dinner, which meant my dad was on hand to help. He makes gumbo once a week as a special at his restaurant, and is a great cook anyway, so he was able to show me the ropes when it came to making the roux. (He also peeled and deveined the shrimp, which I was very thankful for. Ever since I worked at a cafe in England and had to peel shrimp loaded with mini shrimp eggs, that has been one of my least favorite tasks.)
Anyway, so apparently the trick is to cook the roux long enough without making it stick to the bottom of the pan. Keep adding more oil if necessary. And make sure to cook it so the floury taste is gone. It should have a nice, nutty smell and turn pretty dark.
Also, the recipe called for bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, which Trader Joe’s did not have. So I substituted with skinless, boneless thighs and it worked out fine. I cooked them for a shorter time and cut them instead of shredding.
Recipe: Etouffee with chicken, shrimp and sausage
Adapted from foodnetwork.com
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 pound andouille or chorizo sausage, diced
- 3 pounds skin-on, bone-in or 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 4 stalks celery, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 tablespoons dry sherry
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the vegetable oil and sausage and cook, stirring, until crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Season the chicken with salt, then add to the pot in batches to brown, 5 minutes per side. Transfer to the plate with the sausage.
- Make the roux: Remove the pot from the heat and cool slightly (there should be about 1/4 cup drippings; drain or add oil as needed). Return the pot to medium heat. Sprinkle in the flour and stir, scraping up the browned bits from the pan with a wooden spoon. Continue to cook, stirring, until the mixture smells nutty and turns a deep brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the celery, onion, bell pepper, garlic, cayenne, and salt to taste. Cook, stirring, until the vegetables are tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
- Whisk in the broth. Return the chicken and sausage to the pot and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 25 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and let cool slightly while the stew simmers; remove the skin and shred the meat. Return the meat to the pot. Stir in the shrimp and sherry and cook until the shrimp turn pink, 2 to 3 more minutes. Season with salt and black pepper.
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