We’ll Take a Cup O’ Gumbo Yet

31 12 2009

I always spend New Year’s with my bestie from Birmingham. We’ve known each other for years and years and been with each other through thick and thin. But we are nothing, and I mean nothing, alike.

She’s the life of the party. I’m a wallflower. She’s the coolest, a hipster before being a hipster was cool, sporting Converse sneakers. I’m preppy as they come. She can pull of short, pixie hair. Mine’s always been long and straight. I cannot eat enough hamburgers. She’s a vegetarian.

So whenever she comes to visit, I get to try out all those yummy vegetarian recipes that I usually stash away in favor of a big pot roast. And they always end up being delicious and much healthier for my little ticker.

Whether or not you’re getting to host a veggie-eater this New Year’s Eve, here’s a great southern-style Louisiana recipe to throw in your crock pot and forget about until the reveling begins!

Then, don’t forget to add a side of pork and cabbage for good luck, turn on the Rose Bowl, and belt out Auld Lang Syne. Oh, and make those resolutions, for tomorrow, my friends, is 2010!

Happy New Year!

Picture from Nest at TheKnot.com


  • 1 serrano pepper
  • 1 banana pepper
  • 1 small jalapeno chile pepper
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 green bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 quart vegetable broth
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon file powder
  • 1 cup fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • parsnip, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup canned red beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup canned black-eye peas, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups frozen cut okra, thawed


  1. Preheat oven to broil.
  2. Arrange the serrano, banana, and jalapeno chile peppers on a baking sheet and place in the oven. Watch carefully and broil just until the skins blacken and blister, 4 to 5 minutes. Turn the peppers and continue broiling until all sides are blackened. Remove the peppers from the oven and place in a sealed paper bag to steam. After 15 to 20 minutes, remove peppers from the bag and peel off the crispy black skin. Remove stems and seeds from the peppers, coarsely chop, and place in a bowl.
  3. Heat the canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat until a pinch of flour sprinkled over the oil just begins to bubble. Whisk in the rest of the flour and cook, whisking continuously, until the mixture is well blended and dark brown, about 20 minutes. Once it becomes dark brown, remove the roux from the heat.
  4. Place 2 tablespoons of canola oil into a deep soup pot and heat over medium-high heat. When the oil is just about to smoke, stir in the celery with half of the onions and bell peppers. Cook and stir until the vegetables are tender and the onion is transparent, about 5 minutes. Stir 1/4 cup of the vegetable broth into the pot. Cover, and simmer until almost all the liquid is evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Stir the serrano, banana, and jalapeno chile peppers, along with the uncooked bell peppers and onions, garlic, Cajun seasoning, smoked paprika file powder, into the cooked bell peppers and onions. Stir the roux and 1 cup of stock into the vegetable mixture until the roux dissolves. Cover and simmer 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, sweet potato, parsnip, red beans, black-eyed peas, okra, and remaining stock. Simmer uncovered 30 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.



5 responses

1 01 2010
Lentil Soup for the New Year « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] soup even on the warmest days of summer.  The soup is also perfect for your vegetarian palette (see Ginger’s recipe as well) or can be made with ham. I love both but prefer the latter.  Plus, this entire recipe can be made […]

6 08 2010
Food Friday: Southern Trinity « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] in so much of the classic Cajun and Creole dishes such as gumbo and jambalaya, they add just that special flavor we’ve all grown up to love. While this […]

19 12 2010
Happy Birthday, Birmingham! « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] a special thanks to my best friend, Ginny. She is lucky enough to still live in Birmingham, and was available to give me tips on a few […]

1 01 2011
Food Friday: Shellfish « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] And check our our suggested recipes from years past for Lentil Soup or Vegetarian Gumbo. […]

19 04 2013
Food Friday: Okra Combinations | Sweet Iced Tea

[…] around here. As one of the South’s favorite foods — from one of the key ingredients in gumbo to a delicious batch of hot, fried goodness — we’ve featured okra on many a post, and […]

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