Hambergumbo ⁑

Here is yet another gumbo recipe. I doubt that you will find one like it in any New Orleans restaurant, made by those who really know how to cook a “true” gumbo. This one is more of a home-kitchen version, a combination of traditional and handy ingredients. Although not identified in the list below, I use low-sodium products, as available, for several ingredients, such as tomatoes, broth, soy sauce, and Worcestershire. The stew can be frozen or refrigerated and may even taste better the next day. Laissez les bons temps rouler!

It is not served with rice.

  • cooking oil spray
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 4 white mushrooms, sliced
  • ¼ cup bacon, crumbled
  • 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • ½ tsp tarragon
  • ½ tsp savory
  • ½ tsp ground rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 pinch leaf thyme
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 oz okra, cut in pieces, fresh or frozen and thawed
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 tbsp brown gravy mix*
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • ¼–½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp gumbo filé powder

Spray the bottom of a fairly large cooking pot with the cooking oil and brown the ground beef. Use a metal spatula to chop up the clumps of meat into a uniform, spoon-friendly consistency. Add the chopped onion, garlic, celery, and mushrooms and sauté until the onions and celery are limp.

Add the bacon, tomatoes, bell pepper, broth, herbs, and seasonings to the pot, bring to a boil, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the okra and simmer for another 15 minutes.

Mix the brown gravy mix with the water and mix well. Add the gravy mix and carrot to the pot, stir, and simmer another 15 minutes.

Remove the pot from the flame and stir in the cayenne and filé gumbo powder. Serve.

Serves 4–6.