party gras gumbolé

Mardi Gras in New Orleans is a wild and crowded affair best left to the unattached and uncommitted youth of America who can revel with impunity throughout the raucous, glittering, and glamorous gala of costumed participants attending highly decorated costume balls, lavish dining establishments, regal parades, and elbow-to-elbow street parties, while engaged in marathon dancing, drinking, sumptuous dining, drinking, extravagant parading, drinking, with a good dose of hollering, whooping, hanky-panky, and drinking.

Those who are less inclined to such extravaganza, but, who, nevertheless, desire to partake of the season in spirit, spirits, and cuisine, do so at a more leisurely pace and less gaudy surroundings in the New Orleans outlying communities.

The dish described next is a simple, one-dish spicy meal that tempers Mardi Gras exuberance with the more reflective and subtle rituals in celebration of life’s blessings that take place during the Southwestern winter holiday season—a dish that warms the heart as well as the tummy, and can be served not just before the onset of Lent, but on the eve of any festive gathering, which I call a Party Gras. As its name suggests, it combines New Orleans Gumbo with New Mexico Posole.

It is merely a zydegumbo, with substitutions, as delineated below:

  • zydegumbo, with substitutions:
  • chicken for pork, cubed
  • shrimp for ham, cubed
  • green bell pepper for Poblano chile
  • tomatoes for RO*TEL® tomatoes & chile
  • parsley for cilantro leaves
  • thyme for thyme & oregano
  • steamed rice for white hominy
  • omit crawfish

Prepare using the same directions as given in the Zydegumbo recipe, with substitutions and omissions, above.