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Shrimp Gumbo

1 lb fresh shrimp. peeled and deveined
1 quart water
2 quarts chicken stock
1 1/2 lbs. fresh sliced okra (frozen will suffice)
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup flour
1 large green bell pepper chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
2 cloves garlic minced
16-oz can whole tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp basil
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp black pepper
2 tsp salt
1 tsp file powder

Saute okra in a skillet with about 2 tbsp. of oil until tender.
Set aside. In a large Dutch oven, combine 1/2 cup oil and 1/2 cup
flour and stir together over medium heat until mixture becomes a
dark roux.

Add onions, celery, bell pepper, minced garlic and saute' until
vegetables are tender, stirring constantly.Mix in sauteed okra,
tomatoes which have been hand crushed with juice, chicken stock,
water, bay leaf, thyme, basil, peppers, salt, and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer with the pot loosely covered for about 90
minutes, stirring on occasion. Mixture will thicken.

Add shrimp and cook only long enough for the shrimp to turn pink
and opaque ( a matter of minutes). Remove from heat and stir in
file' powder. Do not reboil. Ladle over steaming hot white rice.


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