Jun 23, 2014

From the Marsh into the Pot {Crab and Shrimp Gumbo}

Summer is usually not the time for gumbo.

Crab & Shrimp Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

Who wants to stand over a hot pot stirring roux forever when it's 90+ degrees?
And who wants a hot pot simmering all day when the house already feels like a sauna?

Click the picture for a step-by-step on how to make a dark Cajun roux

But I came back from a summer fishing trip with shrimp and crabs pulled from the marshes south of NOLA.

What else ya gonna do?

Well, plenty I guess.  But some of our crabs were gumbo crabs.  Meaning they were too small to boil (not worth the trouble of picking them).  Gumbo crabs aren't really meant for eatin'.  They're used to flavor seafood gumbos.

Plus, they look bad-ass cool sittin in your bowl.

Crab & Shrimp Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

How's that for garnish?  Booyah!

For some people, gumbo means throw watcha got in the pot.  But you know me.  I have rules about these kinds of things.  Strict rules.  (That don't matter to anyone but me.)

1. Chicken does not mix with seafood in a gumbo.
2. Sausage does not mix with seafood in a gumbo.
2A. Exception: in the absence of crab and oysters, shrimp and sausage (such as andouille) gumbo is perfectly acceptable.

Crab & Shrimp Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

While gumbo crabs will give a lot of flavor to a seafood gumbo, shrimp or seafood stock will take it over the top.  HERE is how I make shrimp stock.

Print It!

Crab & Shrimp Gumbo

3/4 cups vegetable oil
1 cup flour

2 large onions
1 bell pepper
2 stalks celery
6 cloves garlic
9-10 cups shrimp stock (see link above)
1-1 1/2 tsp salt (to taste)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp Tony's Creole Seasoning
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
few shakes hot sauce
2 bay leaves

1 lb peeled shrimp
1 lb crabmeat
8-10 gumbo crabs
cooked white rice
2/3 cup green onions (optional)

Step 1: Chop the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic so that they are ready when your roux is done.

Step 2: Make a roux by adding vegetable oil to a cast iron, or stainless steel pot. Do not use non-stick cookware. Heat the oil on medium-high heat. Wait until oil is very hot. Then, gradually sprinkle in the flour, stirring/scraping constantly with a flat-edge spatula. Keep adding flour as roux browns; you will know you've added enough when all of the vegetable oil has combined with the flour and when the roux no longer looks oily.

Stir constantly. This step takes time, usually about half an hour. Roux is done when it is a dark brown color, almost the color of chocolate.

Step 3: When the roux is done, add the chopped vegetables to stop the roux from cooking further.  Saute for 10-15 minutes (the mixture will be a sludgy paste and that's ok.).  Add 2 cups of the stock and simmer on low for about 20 minutes.  The idea is to get the vegetables cooked down and softened.  Go ahead and add more stock during this process if needed.

Step 4: Add about 7 more cups of stock along with the seasonings and simmer for about 30 minutes.  Add the gumbo crabs and simmer another 20-30 minutes.

Step 5: Add the shrimp and crabmeat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the shrimp are cooked through.

Serving: Taste for seasoning before serving.  Serve gumbo over cooked rice, adding a gumbo crab to each bowl. Top with green onions.

More Gumbo...
Guinea Gumbo | Ms. enPlace
Red Bean Gumbo | Ms. enPlace
Post Holiday Turkey Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

In the Past...
Dessert/Adult Smoothies | Ms. enPlace
Double Chocolate Granita | Ms. enPlace
Blueberry Cheesecake Bars | Ms. enPlace

Linking with:
Feeding BigThe 21st Century Housewife Hearth and Soul Blog Hop
Full Time MamaMiz Helen’s Country Cottage
Jam Hands
My Turn for us
The YUCK Stops Here Lou Lou Girls
Wednesday Whatsits Inspiration Monday


  1. What a delicious looking Gumbo, Michelle. I laughed at you says your rules only matter to you. Well let me tell you. My family uses most of your gumbo rules too! My mother just about fainted when I told her a friend of mine I brought chicken and andouille gumbo to, added shrimp when he re-heated it. You just don't do that. LOL!

  2. We recently returned from Nola and had some pretty good gumbo! I can't wait to try this recipe! Although, I must admit, stirring the roux for 30+ minutes doesn't sound too appealing. Nonetheless, I still can't wait to try it! Stopping by from the link up. Have a great week!

  3. Anonymous6/25/2014

    If you are brave a roux can be made pretty quickly; instead of constantly stirring you just stir when gets to point of burning...not for the faint of heart though!

  4. Your making me hungry! Yum. Pinned. Thanks for being a part of our party. We are always thrilled to have you. Please stop by tonight at 7 pm and party with us. It's a thrill to have you! http://loulougirls.blogspot.com
    Happy Monday! Lou Lou Girls

  5. Hi Michelle,
    I was just looking at the color of your Roux and I can tell you have been making this for a long time because it looks beautiful. I sure would love a nice bowl of that Gumbo. Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  6. I was looking at this recipe and I guess I could use any crab that I can get on the East Coast, because we don't have Gumbo Crabs?


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