Smoked Turkey and Crab Filé Gumbo

Menu Part: 
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A traditional gumbo that is comforting in its familiarity. The addition of crab takes it to a new level and will please the most discriminating palate.


3⁄4 gal. fish fumé
3⁄4 gal. dark turkey stock
1 smoked ham hock
3 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. ground white pepper
3⁄4 tbsp. cayenne pepper
3⁄4 tbsp. ground paprika
3⁄4 tbsp. ground cumin
3⁄4 tsp. chili powder
3⁄4 tsp. dry mustard
1⁄2 tsp. dry thyme
5 onions, roughly chopped
8 red, yellow and green peppers, roughly chopped
5 celery stalks, roughly chopped
1⁄2 garlic head, peeled, cloves cut in half
2 bay leaves
Oil, as needed
3 poblano peppers, diced
2 jalapeño peppers, cut in half
3⁄4 lb. okra, sliced
6 Roma tomatoes, quartered
1⁄4 cup filé powder (ground sassafras root)
1 cup peanut oil
2 1⁄2 lb. turkey (thigh, leg and breast)
1 1⁄2 cups high-gluten flour
1⁄8 cup garlic, minced
1⁄2 lb. andouille sausage, sliced in
1⁄2-in. thick half-moons, cooked
1 Dungeness crab, par cooked, cleaned
1 cup tomatoes, diced
1 1⁄2 cups okra, sliced
1⁄2 bunch scallions, sliced


1. In a stock pot, bring to a boil fish fumé, turkey stock and ham hock. Reduce to a simmer.

2. In a bowl, combine kosher salt, black and white pepper, paprika, cumin, chili powder, mustard and thyme. Reserve spice mix.

3. In a hotel pan, combine half of the onions, half of the bell peppers, and all of the celery, garlic cloves and bay leaves. Reserve.

4. In a skillet, sauté remaining onions in oil until golden. Add poblanos, jalapeños, okra, tomatoes and 1⁄2 tbsp. reserved spice mix. Sauté until caramelized. Sprinkle with filé powder and cook 3 min. Add vegetables to stock.

5. In a bowl, mix 1⁄2 cup flour with 11⁄2 tbsp. spice mix. Season turkey with 11⁄2 tbsp. spice mix and dredge turkey in flour mixture, coating well.

6. In a large skillet, heat peanut oil. Sear turkey on all sides until golden, then add to stock. Simmer until turkey is done, 45-60 min. Remove turkey and cool. Remove skin and bones and dice into 1⁄2-in. cubes. Reserve.

7. Strain oil and return it to the skillet. Heat until almost smoking; whisk in remaining flour and reduce heat to medium. Whisk roux until deep red-brown in color. Pour over vegetables in the hotel pan, stirring. Add minced garlic and 1 tbsp. spice mix.

8. Add roux/vegetables to stock. Cook, stirring, about 5 min. between each spoonful until all the roux is added. Simmer 30-50 min., until vegetables are tender.

9. Remove ham hock and cool. Discard skin and bones; dice ham into 1⁄2-in pieces. Crack the crab and cut into bite-size pieces. Reserve.

10. In a skillet, sauté remaining peppers, tomatoes and okra in oil until soft; season with 1 tbsp. spice mix. Add to gumbo.

11. Add crab, turkey, ham and sausage to gumbo and stir well. Allow to rest, covered, 5 min. before serving with rice and scallion garnish.

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