Seafood Gumbo

27 Aug

1 lb okra, sliced 
1/4 cup plus 2 tbs butter or margarine, melted and divided 
1/4 cup all purpose flour 
1 bunch green onions, sliced 
1/2 cup chopped celery 
2 clove garlic, minced 
1 can(16 oz)tomatoes, undrained 
1 bay leaf 
1 tbs chopped fresh parsley 
1 fresh thyme sprig 
1 1/2 tsp salt 
1/2-1 tsp red pepper 
2 quarts water 
1 lb unpeeled medium size fresh shrimp 
1/2 lb fresh crabmeat 
hot cooked rice 
gumbo file(optional) 

Saute okra in 2 tbs butter in a large skillet until okra is lightly browned. Set aside. Combine remaining 1/4 cup butter and flour in a large iron skillet, cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until roux is the color of chocolate(20-25 minutes). Stir in green onions, celery and garlic, cook until vegetables are tender. Combine roux, sauteed okra, tomatoes, bay leaf, chopped parsley, fresh thyme, salt, red pepper and water in a large dutch oven. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Peel and devein shrimp, add shrimp and crabmeat to okra mixture. Simmer an additional 10 minutes. Remove bay leaf. Serve gumbo over rice. Add gumbo file, if desired. Makes 2 1/2 quarts.


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