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substitute for shrimp in gumbo

mr mouther Jan 6, 2009 05:52 PM

i love making gumbo but it's kind of a pain in the butt b/c my lover eats no duck and i have to get the andouille sausage made out of turkey and chicken and no intestinal skin. that aside, i like gumbo with shrimp, but i hate cleaning the stuff and have pretty much stopped eating them at all after reading taras grescoe's description of shrimp farms the world over.

so I really need something else to put in my gumbo besides the sausage. Beef and lamb and duck and pork are not options. shrimp is what i'm trying to avoid. I've used oysters, but the whole thing about gumbo for me is how good the leftovers are, and i haven't figured out a way to make oysters good in anything as leftovers.

any ideas?

  1. mr mouther Jan 10, 2009 01:51 PM

    thanks for the suggestions. i'm deffy fan of greens in my gumbo, and i usually do a triple thickening thing with file, okra, and the roux (it can't be too thick for me.) as fra as stock, i've still got some smoked tureky stock left over from thanksG, and I LOVE making gumbo with that.

    As far as adding crab, does it keep better than oysters for leftovers?
    I never thought about crayfish - i'll have to see what i can find in LA. if not, maybe i'll langostine it

    1. Cheese Boy Jan 7, 2009 06:37 PM

      My absolute favorite is the *real* chicken and andouille sausage gumbo. I've had rabbit gumbo, turtle gumbo, they don't compare. The best substitute for shrimp would be crawfish meat. The best substitute for sausage would be a spicy chicken sausage rather than use andouille. Whatever you do, don't skimp on any of the okra.

      1. k
        kobetobiko Jan 6, 2009 08:34 PM

        I am also thinking about crayfish, and may be blue crabs.

        Perhaps mussels and clams?

        1. k
          knitterbetty Jan 6, 2009 07:58 PM

          The epicurious recipe I'm making this weekend calls for sausage , shrimp AND boneless chicken thighs cut into one inch squares. I agree with another poster's comment, it should be dark meat. Thighs are tasty.

          1. Candice Jan 6, 2009 07:23 PM

            Chicken thighs and/or smoked turkey legs, crayfish?

            2 Replies
            1. re: Candice
              l
              LadyintheKitchen Jan 6, 2009 08:25 PM

              now that sounds like it will work!!

              1. re: Candice
                p
                powillie Jan 6, 2009 08:46 PM

                Sounds like your lover is conscious of fat, I would start with a broth made from the bones, skin and gelatin from a roasted chicken. Season the broth with bouillion and seasonings of your choice, then skim the fat. Make the gumbo as always by adding the broth to the roux, then add the reserved chicken, the low fat sausage and fake crab. Flake the krab into small pieces, no big chunks. There is no need to tell anyone exactly what the ingredients are, just that this is your low fat version of gumbo.

              2. HaagenDazs Jan 6, 2009 07:20 PM

                I suggest you simply go with shrimp - I know it's the exact opposite of what you're asking, but shrimp doesn't always come from farms. Just do your research and let your grocery/supplier know you don't like and don't want farmed, imported shrimp. The real wild caught stuff is out there, just ask for it.

                And good for you for not buying that crap shrimp from farms!

                1. Zeldog Jan 6, 2009 06:39 PM

                  I guess dumping the lover is not an option. Beef and lamb don't belong in gumbo anyway, so no loss there. Chicken, dark meat only, adds lots of flavor, and even though you might also use chicken andouille the tastes aren't the same. Don't use white meat, it has no flavor. Add some greens (kinda like a gumbo z'erbs variation). Totally nontraditional, but I added some bacalao once, and it worked quite nicely. Add it early so it falls apart -- taste a bit like crab jerky, if there was such a thing. Soak the bacalao first, of coarse, as you would for any other recipe. You might try regular cod if you can't find bacalao.

                  1. todao Jan 6, 2009 06:11 PM

                    Crayfish, scallops?

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