I love okra. Absolutely adore it. Gumbo is my second-favorite way of cooking okra – my favorite is frying, but that’s no longer allowed on my new eating discipline, though I’m going to try to closely replicate fried okra by baking it. Let me know if you have a recipe!
This is a wonderful gumbo and it’s quite healthy. It also incorporates a couple of my favorite vegetables – eggplant and chickpeas. Highly recommended! Once again, this recipe comes from Susan’s FatFree Vegan blog.
2 tablespoons unbleached white flour
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium green or yellow pepper, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups vegetable broth
2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes
8 ounces eggplant or other vegetables, diced*
1 pound sliced okra, fresh or frozen
1 16-ounce can chickpeas — (drained)
1 teaspoon salt — (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper — (or to taste)
1-3 teaspoons Tabasco
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke flavoring (or chipotle chile powder to taste)
2-3 cups additional broth or water
In a small skillet, toast the flour over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until it is a uniform tan color, about the color of whole wheat flour. (If you use whole wheat flour for this, it will of course be darker.) Be very careful not to burn it. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Spray a large non-stick pot lightly with olive oil, and sauté the onions, pepper, and celery over medium-high heat. When the vegetables begin to get brown, add the garlic and browned flour and stir to combine. Add the vegetable broth and tomatoes, stir, and add all the remaining ingredients. The gumbo should have enough liquid to resemble a chunky soup; if it is too dry, add some more vegetable broth or water. Cook for at least 30 minutes, until the flavors have a chance to mingle. Remove the bay leaves and serve over rice.
*If you use softer vegetables like zucchini or summer squash, add them after the gumbo has cooked for 15 minutes; adding them earlier will make them mushy. Carrots, eggplant, cabbage, brussels sprouts, and other longer-cooking vegetables can go in with the okra and other ingredients.
Makes 8 servings. Each (without rice) contains 135 Calories (kcal); 1g Total Fat; (6% calories from fat); 6g Protein; 28g Carbohydrate; trace Cholesterol; 611mg Sodium; 7g Fiber.