Nov 24, 2014

Thanksgiving Leftovers--Louisiana Style {Smoked Turkey and Okra Gumbo}

Gumbo made with leftover Thanksgiving turkey 
will soon be bubbling away 
on back burners across Louisiana.

Smoked Turkey & Okra Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

The number of gumbo recipes equal the number of cooks.

Smoked Turkey & Okra Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

There are many types of gumbo.
Chicken, hen, guinea, turkey, dove, duck, goose.  Rabbit, squirrel.  Seafood.
Beef and pork (except for sausage) are rarely seen in gumbo.

There are also different styles of gumbo.  Cajun gumbo is almost always made with a very dark roux and rarely has tomatoes and/or okra.  Cajuns also tend to stick with poultry and game--seafood gumbo is not their "everyday gumbo."

Tomatoes and okra are usually found in Creole style gumbos.  Seafood is more prominent as well.

Smoked Turkey & Okra Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

My gumbo rules:
1-- I like a dark roux.  A dark roux adds a layer of flavor that can't be beat.  Keep in mind that the darker the roux, the weaker the thickening power.

2-- I don't go crazy mixing a lot of different meats/proteins.  Gumbo is meant to feed a crowd at a low cost.

3-- And meat doesn't get mixed with seafood, except for possibly shrimp and andouille sausage.  You may see chicken, shrimp, crab, and sausage gumbos in cooking magazines, but on most Louisiana tables, chicken (or other fowl or game) and seafood are not traditionally mixed.

Smoked Turkey & Okra Gumbo | Ms. enPlace

Smoked Turkey and Okra Gumbo is probably more Creole than any other gumbo I've made.  
It has a tomato-y base, is flavored with bay leaves (a common seasoning in the New Orleans area), and contains okra.  

Print It

Smoked Turkey and Okra Gumbo

Turkey stock (8-10 cups)
2 large onions, chopped
4 ribs celery, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cups sliced okra
3 Tbsp tomato paste
1 lb andouille sausage, sliced
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup flour
2 bay leaves
1 tsp salt, or to taste
½ tsp black pepper, or to taste
¾-1 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
¾ tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
6 cups leftover smoked turkey
cooked rice
chopped green onion

Start by making a stock with the turkey carcass, onions, celery, and garlic.

Make sure all of the vegetables are chopped before starting the roux.

Brown the sliced sausage in a large cast iron or stainless steel pot.  Remove.  Add oil to the pot and heat over medium.  Test by sprinkling in a pinch of flour. If the flour sinks, continue heating the oil. If the flour bubbles, sprinkle in all of the flour. Slowly stir and scrape the flour, moving the mixture constantly. If pools of oil form on the surface, sprinkle additional flour over them. Continue stirring and scraping until the roux is brick red or light chocolate colored.

Immediately add the chopped vegetables (onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic, okra) to stop the roux from burning.  Add the tomato paste to the mixture and saute until the vegetables are tender.  If the mixture is dry, add liquid from the diced tomatoes to help cook down the vegetables.

Slowly pour warm stock into the pot, stirring to prevent lumps.  Add the seasoning and tomatoes and simmer for 1 hour.  Add the sausage and turkey to the pot and simmer another hour.

Serve over cooked rice.  Sprinkle green onion over the top of each bowl.

More Gumbo...
Turkey Gumbo
Guinea Gumbo
Crab & Shrimp Gumbo

Linking with:
My Pinterventures The YUCK Stops Here
The 21st Century Housewife Hearth and Soul Blog Hop Lou Lou Girls
I party and get pinned at Tasty Tuesdays on Anyonita Nibbles Full Time Mama Two Little Cavaliers
Miz Helen’s Country Cottage My Turn for us
Weekend Bites
Fluster Buster


  1. I'm headed to your house to eat!!

  2. At first I thought it was similar to a stir fry Chinese dish, but it seems totally different. I am sure serving this with rice is absolutely good, but I am thinking to add in rice noodle. It probably will have good texture and the rice noodle will absorb lots of the sauce. :)

  3. Absolutely gorgeous and recipe looks delish!

  4. Anonymous11/28/2014

    another exception to rule #3 duck and oyster gumbo.

  5. Yummy! Pinned and tweeted. Lou Lou Girls

  6. Michelle, this is bee-yoo-ti-ful. I'm pretty sure I could live on gumbo, especially this one. Thank you so much for sharing it with us at Treasure Box Tuesday- pinned! :)

  7. Delicious Michelle, Love to try gumbo ,thanks for sharing with Hearth and soul blog hop. pinning.

  8. I find making roux a challenge...I'm always afraid I'll burn it or the opposite it will just taste too floury. Thanks for the advice. Love this gumbo pinned.


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