If you have been rocking with me for a while, you know that I am a big advocate of Slow Cooker Sundays. It is one of the only days in the week where I am able to utilize my Crockpot. During the work week, I am away from home too long to use. Most recipes call for your food to cook for a maximum of 9 hours on low. I am usually gone from my house from for almost 12 hours! Sunday morning I am able to throw my ingredients in and set it and forget it.
During Holy Week, my mom and I were trying to figure out what to make for Easter. We are not traditional people, so having ham with all the sides was not in the equation for dinner. I wanted to make something different for us. My mom had to work on Easter, but I wanted to have something hot and filling on the table when she walked into the house. The thought of gumbo crossed my mind. I immediately went to Pinterest to find an easy Crockpot version of the meal. I also was looking for a recipe that didn’t call for too many ingredients, but still gave me the hearty and rich flavor of New Orleans. I found one and bought the necessary ingredients from the grocery store.
Easter morning after sunrise service, I started with the roux. Every great gumbo comes with the patience and strong forearms from stirring your roux. It starts with flour and oil over medium heat. After the flour is incorporated into the oil, you continue to stir up to about 15-20 minutes until it develops into a rich dark color similar to dark chocolate. It is very easy to burn, so you can’t step away or stop stirring. After I finished the roux, I threw it in with sliced smoked sausage, onion, pepper, tons of spices and fire roasted tomato into the crock pot. The instructions called for me to also add in my okra, but it is super easy to overcook it and produce that slime that we all hate. It cooked on low for 9 hours. Around the 8th hour, I checked in and added cooked shredded chicken that I had on hand, as well as the okra and shrimp to the pot. I also added additional spices for my taste buds. I cooked the rice separately and after almost 10 hours, dinner was served.
It was delicious and a little spicy. The richness of the roux gave it a full bodied flavor. I even reached out to one of my New Orleans natives and got the thumbs up. Not bad for a girl from PA and her crock pot. I will definitely cook this dish again because of the ease and great flavors that came from it. What do you whip up in your crock pot?