I've been "appropriating" recipes from here for a couple of years now and I figure it's time to give back a bit. As ya'll have probably guessed from my name here, I am Cajun, born, raised, and proud of it. One of the greatest family pictures I have is when I was about 3 or 4 years old, my Dad holding me up in one arm while he was stirring a pot of gumbo with his free hand. Yep my Dad was an excellent cook, in fact, my Mom said she couldn't boil water without burning it when they married ( I suspect that was a bit of exaggeration LOL) and she had to learn from him. Anywho, over the last 4 or 5 decades, I've been working on getting my gumbo recipe juuuuuuuusssssssstttttttttt right. Today, I think I finally got it, so I thought I'd share. BTW, @runswithdogs deserves a big thank you! because I fixed his lo carb pizza yesterday and ended up with almost a pound extra of smoked, boneless, skinless chicken thighs.....which led to Sweetie saying today, "What ya got planned for the left over chicken? Gumbo would be nice, hint, hint." Well, being a guy, I don't take hints worth a damn! So, I decided that I'd make her a big pot of her favorite comfort food, gumbo with chicken, sausage and okra. Soo, here goes. First you make a roux (pronounced "ROO") by heating about a cup of oil and a cup of flour together over medium-high heat, stirring almost constantly until it's about the color of peanut butter or a little darker. A cast iron skillet seems to work best for making the roux. Take off heat and set aside. After that, I took a small onion, 1/2 large bell pepper and 3 ribs celery, diced them up and sweated them in some coconut oil in a medium big pot over medium heat.TIL they were starting to get soft. Then I added the roux to the veggies, stirred it around for a little bit until it got a bit soft and melded with the veggies........don't over cook here or the roux will stick to the bottom of the pot, burn and ruin everything. I put in about 6 cups of water, heated to boiling and watched how thick it got. Thickness of gumbo is a personal preference...I like mine on the thick side. Add water throughout the cooking to maintain your preferred thickness. Then turn down the heat to a slow simmer. Remember those smoked chicken breasts left over from @runswithwolves pizza (about a pound or so)? This is when I cut them into large chunks and put into the pot. A good dash of salt, pepper and garlic powder and let it simmer for a couple of hours. Taste every so often and adjust seasonings, but remember you're gonna add more stuff, so go light on them. While it was simmering, I took 12 oz Cajun pure pork sausage I picked up last week in LA, sliced it about an inch thick, then browned it up medium (store bought kielbasa will work if you don't have the real sausage, but be careful it doesn't burn) This releases a bunch of grease. Pour the sausage (and drippings if you want) into the pot after about 30 minutes of the gumbo simmering and let it go. I cut up one bunch of green onions and about 1/2 bunch of parsley at this point and add to the gumbo. Every summer, I buy about 10 lbs of fresh okra from a buddy and cook it up in the oven on a cookie sheet with an equal amount of sliced onion and a lot of salt, pepper and granulated garlic.....350 degrees, stir every 10 minutes with a wooden spoon or spatula (stirring with metal makes it slimy!) till done, then I put it into seal a meal bags and seal, then freeze. I freeze in 12 oz portions which is perfect for a pot of gumbo. I added one pack of okra to the pot after about an hour of simmering, and let it go for another hour or so. While it was simmering, I made up a little bit of potato salad and 4 eggs worth of deviled eggs, put in fridge to chill till gumbo was done. After about 3 hours total of simmering, I cut up another bunch of green onions and the rest of the bunch of parsley and added to the gumbo along with a good sprinkling of file (pronounced "feel ay", which is ground up sassafras leaves) and gave the pot a good stir. I put on a pot of rice and let the gumbo slowly simmer till the rice was done (needless to say, the house was really smelling good by now!). I fluffed the rice (use a fork, it gives much fluffier rice), turned off the fire from the gumbo, brought out the deviled eggs and 'tater salad and let it all sit for about 15 minutes. I served the gumbo and rice in a bowl, a saucer with the tater salad and eggs, and some ice tea to drink. I pickle peppers every summer and use some of the brine to further season my bowl of gubo just before I eat it. And that's what was for dinner tonight. If you don't like okra, don't use it. If you don't like sausage, don't use it. Enjoy! Kajun P.S. Thanks everyone for all the recipes posted here! You can also make seafood gumbo with your preferred seafood. Or mix and match if you're adventurous.