My husband was sent to Southern California for work a while back, so I hauled the kids down to take advantage of a "corporate rate" hotel near Disneyland.
We love going to Disneyland - my husband and I actually went there for our honeymoon after getting married on Leap Year day. We are both computer programmer types - so we found February 29th to be a wildly amusing anniversary date. I still get a kick out of it... We had a great time in Disneyland without any kids and going on rides all day, except I got a nasty cold on our last evening and I didn't get to enjoy dinner at the "Blue Bayou" because I couldn't taste anything.
In case you don't know, the Blue Bayou is a restaurant located inside the Pirates of the Carribean ride. It sits on the edge of the fake swampy river with fake fire flies and everything - even a fake evening sky with fake clouds and piped in fake banjo music. I love the place!
So I take the kids down for this vacation where we don't have to pay my husband's airfare and the hotel for one of the nights is part of his standard travel... One of my big goals this time around is to have dinner at the Blue Bayou.
And guess what? They actually have the best gumbo I have ever tasted! So after we got home we began searching and experimenting to find a gumbo recipe we liked as well as what we had at the Blue Bayou. I can wholeheartedly recommend this recipe for gumbo and it tasted just like we remembered: http://grubpost.blogspot.com/2009/12/dis...
I use frozen okra and I run it through a food processor to get very small pieces since they come in about one inch chunks. I also use sweet onions - vidalia or walla walla sweets work great becuase yellow onion can be overpowering. I buy the andouille sausage in packages of five, separate them into freezer bags and use one sausage for each soup.
Be sure to use a large stock pot to make this! It is a lot of soup. We use just plain white rice to toss on top. I don't have a dirty rice recipe but I am in the market for one.
The history of gumbo varies a little from source to source, but it seems consistent that this was a stew made to feed large families affordably.