Louisiana Eats!
5:49 pm
Wed August 31, 2011

How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Roasted Okra

2 pounds okra (preferably small pods - if using larger, cut into 1 inch lengths)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar or water
Salt

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Lightly grease a baking pan with olive oil. Combine olive oil with water or balsamic vinegar in a large bowl. Add the okra to the bowl and toss until lightly coated. Arrange in a single layer on the baking pan. Lightly salt and add other seasonings like cayenne or even cumin if desired. Put into the hot oven and set a timer for 5 minutes. Roast, stirring or shaking the pan every five minutes until the okra is lightly browned. This should be between 10 and 15 minutes in total. Serve.

SEAFOOD GUMBO

1/2 cup oil
1 cup flour
4 gumbo crabs
2 lbs. shrimp
1 onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 lbs. okra, sliced into 1/4" pieces
Oil for frying okra
1 lb. can crushed tomatoes
1 gallon shrimp stock
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons thyme
1 bay leaf
1 bunch green onions
Hot sauce to taste

Peel shrimp and combine peels, onion skins and tops in a stock pot. Cover with water and boil for 20 minutes.
Strain and reserve.
Fry okra in very hot oil until lightly browned (or roast).
Make a dark roux with the flour and oil, cooking to the color of milk chocolate brown. Add onions, stirring together until the roux darkens to a bittersweet chocolate brown. Add celery and bell pepper. Saut for five minutes, then add the gumbo crabs, tomatoes, okra, herbs and shrimp stock. Then add garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer 45 minutes or longer.
Ten minutes before serving add shrimp and green onions. Add hot sauce and salt as needed. Serve on top of cooked rice.

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