Thursday, February 18, 2010

Gumbo Z'Herbes

Veggies that don't suck, Volume II.

Gumbo Z'Herbes is traditionally made a little deeper into Lent, but I decided to give it a whirl. We got a whole mess of greens from the Hollygrove Market, plus we had some dandelion greens in the fridge, so we needed a way to use them up. Gumbo Z'Herbes is the answer.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
Greens shit takes over the kitchen

The first quandary is what recipe to trust. Pistolette didn't like the paper's recipe but mentioned Emeril's. I went through my cookbooks and found one in Commander's and in Foose's "Screen Doors and Sweet Tea". Martha Foose is actually a family friend who catered a great meal at a family friend's house while I was evacuated for Katrina. This is the first meal out of her book I've tried and I like the results.

The first thing to do once you settle on a recipe is sharpen your knife. Trust me, you've got a whole lot of chopping to do.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
Start Chopping
The way to make Gumbo Z'Herbes is chop up a whole bunch of onions, garlic, and greens and make a sort of green-stock.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
After it simmers for a while, make a roux.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
Add the non-boiled veggies (1 bunch parsley, 1 bunch green onions, etc.) and then start skimming the greens out of the stockpot.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
Once that mixture has cooked down for at least 30 minutes (smelling quite nice in the process) add your vegetable stock/broth. I left out a couple of cups worth because I thought it needed it and I think that was a good move. Give it a couple more hours to simmer.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
Serve over rice with with about a 1/4 teaspoon of Filé dropped into and spread into the serving bowl. Never add it to the pot, because if you boil your main batch again, you'll get a goopy mess.
Gumbo Z'Herbs
The gumbo was very, very different. It was almost like a green soup. The dandelion greens were very spicy and gave it kick. If I were doing it over again, I'd probably use more collards and kale and ditch the dandelion greens.

UPDATE- Here's the book that the recipe is based off of:
Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook by Martha Hall Foose


Pistolette said...

Thanks for posting it! I'll give mine a try when I have time (we're all sick with mega cooties over here). Still unsure about whether I want to use a roux version or not.

Clay said...

Make the Roux. That's the best smelling part (as you're cooking it, at least).

Mine was simple: 1/4 cup veg oil, 1/4 cup flour. Some File was added at the end, too.

judyb said...

Thanks for the recipe. I may try it soon, it's so work intensive, but worth it!