Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Gumbo in the South of Shikoku Island, Japan

Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo over Japanese Short-grain Rice

Okra and tomatoes are popularly grown here in Kochi, and I still miss the life in the South in the U.S. once in a while. That leads to my occasional experiments with gumbo recipes during the okra-and-tomato season.

I usually rely on this recipe for making the roux (though I use canola instead of peanut oil), but improvise a lot with the rest. Today I ventured to go for shrimp and a little expensive spicy sausage.

The sausage was worth the price and made this dish way better than my last attempt with chicken and cheaper sausage. :D

I froze about half of the gumbo base today, so next time I can experiment with different ingredients but don't have to make the whole thing from scratch. Maybe crab meat for the next time… and long grain rice.



Carolie said...

Oh, I love okra so much! I like it pickled, or the tiniest pods just steamed and tossed with a little salt and butter. MMMmmm! Unfortunately, the okra I've seen here is rather old and tough, and I haven't gotten a garden going yet.

Oh well! I can live vicariously through your posts! :)

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

It looks very fine; yummy! I've eaten okra only once, but will have to buy some soon again...

K and S said...

That looks great!

ghanima said...

Looks great! I've been doing a lot of tomato/rice/onion dishes lately, maybe I should take a stab at gumbo too.

Salieri said...

nice tomatoes. do you guys get heirloom varieties?

gumbo in the south...of shikoku? you rock hardcore. you know, one day you should throw down and have a cajun feast with gumbo, raw oysters, and a nice blackened filet mignon.

when you cook non-japanese fare like this, do you invite the neighbors? what do they think?

iml said...

How do you prepare this delicious eye appealing gumbo dish?

obachan said...

My dad grows okra in his veg. garden, so I should have taken some shots of them for your vicarious experience ;) They look so cute when blooming.

Oh, another okra fan? To tell you the truth, I’m not too crazy about okra, but I try to eat them as much as I can because they are supposed to be good for health.

k & s

Go for it. You’ll love it if you like a spicy dish. (In my case I needed to experiment a little to come up with the combination of the spices just right for me.)

Honestly, I didn’t know what heirloom tomatoes were until you mentioned it. After some googling, I guess they are available in Japan, but I’m not sure if they are sold at the Sunday Market where I buy tomatoes often. The tags only say “Tomatoes” and I can’t tell heirloom varieties by appearance.

Yeah, the Cajun feast sounds like a great idea. I might give it a try if I win a lottery or something.
Unfortunately in this apartment, we just say hi to the neighbors but do not invite each other. I don’t think any of them would like Cajun food anyway… it’s just too “different” for them.

Click on the word “the recipe” in the second paragraph. It tells you what the basic procedure is like. But I never follow the recipe when I add the spices… I add them little by little, tasting after each addition, until it is spicy enough but not too spicy for my palate. ;)

Anonymous said...

Have you tried using butter for the roux? (Expensive, I know, but it makes a difference,IMHO.) Also, if you can get ahold of some gumbo file powder (ground dried sassafras leaves used for seasoning and thickening), it gives a lovely aroma and deeper color to the dish. In any case, gumbo is a great and extravagant dish, don't you think? Yours looks too scrumptious not to share - couldn't you tell people that it's Louisiana-style カレーライス to get them to try it?
ちなみに、フランス料理のmirepoixに似ているルイジアナ料理の千切りにしたたまねぎとピーマンとセロリとの組み合わせはよくThe Holy Trinity と呼ばれています。面白いでしょう。

JMom said...

I love okra, i love gumbo! I have been itching to make some since my okra plants have started putting out. You just made me want some :) beatiful looking dish, btw obachan.

Unknown said...

Wow! As you know, it is difficult to find the proper Andouille Sausage in the USA, outside of Louisiana. I am so happy that you spent the extra money to treat yourself to good sausage!

obachan said...

Yeah, the okra is 本物. Why?
Your idea of calling the gumbo “Louisiana-style curry rice” is a good one :D (though I’m sure no one around here knows where Louisiana is).
I’ve heard of “the holy trinity.” It’s such a shame that I didn’t try more Cajun dishes when I visited New Orleans…

Your gumbo must be so scrumptious. ;)

Unfortunately I didn’t have a chance to taste Andouille sausage when I visited Louisiana, but I heard a lot about it. The sausage I used this time was spicy, but not smoked.