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File Gumbo

1 1/2 c Onion, chopped
1/2 Green pepper, chopped
1/2 c Celery, chopped
3 cl Garlic, pressed
Peanut oil
1 lb Fresh okra, 1/2" slices
2 T Flour
1 Can whole/crushed tomatoes
1/2 Slice chopped smoked ham
1/2 ts Basil
1/2 ts Thyme
3 Bay leaves
1 T File powder (sassafras powder)
2 Cans chicken stock
1 Can beef stock
1/2 lb Bay scallops
1/2 lb Fresh shrimp
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 ts Worchestershire sauce
1 ts Tobasco sauce
Enough cooked rice for your family


First make a roux (take flour and mix with 2 T. peanut oil, don't make too dark, it must be light brown like copper). When roux is ready add crushed tomatoes, slowly so roux does not lump up. Add chopped ham, thyme, basil, bay leaves and file powder and simmer on low.
Next, take chopped okra and fry in a little peanut oil in a large skillet; use a non-stick pan so it doesn't stick. Saute it until it is not slimey or ropey, this takes about 25 minutes.
In another pan, saute onion, celery, green pepper and garlic in some peanut oil. Then in a large dutch oven pour the canned chicken and beef broth and bring to a boil. Once bubbling turn it down and add all vegetables. Then add the tomatoe roux mixture. Cook this for about 1 hour.
After one hour you can add cleaned, deveined shrimp and scallops. OPTIONAL: You can also add 1/2 lb. of crab is you so desire, or oysters or fish, whatever you have on hand. Cook the seafood in the gumbo about 15 minutes, don't overcook the seafood. Add worchestershire sauce and tabasco, salt and pepper to taste. If you like it real hot just put Tabasco on the table and shake over your own dish.
Serve over 1/4 cup of cooked rice in a large bowl.


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