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It’s almost time for Mardi Gras! Get in the spirit of the festivities with this delicious New Orleans Seafood Gumbo featuring fresh shrimp, crabmeat and oysters. Perfect on a cold day, every bite will transport your guests right to Bourbon Street.

2 hour cooktime (approximate) | 25 min prep | Serves 6-8

Ingredients
1/2 cup vegetable oil/butter
1/2 cup flour
3 cloves garlic, minced
2  onions, chopped
2 green bell peppers chopped
1 cup chopped celery
6 cups beef broth
1 14.5 can diced tomatoes
1 1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 bay leafs
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Your favorite hot sauce (We like Louisinana or Cajun Sunshine)
3-4 whole crabs, cleaned and halved
1-2 cups of frozen okra
1-2 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined if desired
1 pint oysters drained; liquid reserved
8 ounces claw crabmeat, picked over for shells
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup green onions chopped
* hot cooked rice
* favorite hot sauce

Directions

1 – Begin to make the roux – over medium-high heat whisk the flour and vegetable oil in heavy a bottomed pot until the roux turns a peanut-butter brown color. Be careful not to let it burn; if it does, throw it away and start over.

2 – Next, add the onions, garlic, celery and green peppers, and stir into the roux, turn the heat down to med-low and heat for 5 minutes then add garlic. Cook for 2 more minutes.

3 – Slowly stir in the broth, tomatoes, spices and whole crabs. Add a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce. Simmer for about 1 hour. Be sure to skim any oil or foam that rises to the top.

5 – After an hour or so, add the shrimp, reserved oyster liquid, and frozen okra and cook for about 5 minutes.

6 – Next add parsley, green onions, crabmeat and oysters about 15 minutes before serving, and continue to cook over low heat stirring occasionally and adjusting spices.

7 – Serve ladled over hot cooked rice, with favorite hot sauce on the side.

TIP: Gumbo is great for freezing. If you decide to freeze, reheat the gumbo and add the oysters, 15 minutes before serving.

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