How to make langostino gumbo
Langostino gumbo is a delicious and flavorful meal that is perfect for a chilly day. Full of veggies and delicate seafood, it is served with rice, hard boiled eggs and pickled okra.
You can find all of my langostino recipes in one place to make finding them even easier.
Langostino lovers, this recipe is a must try. The flavors are subtle, but so delicious. This gumbo has quickly become our favorite version.
What is gumbo?
Gumbo is essentially, a stew. It is made with a roux, stock, gumbo filé, herbs and usually, a protein. Most often, chicken and andouille sausage.
Gumbo z’herbes would be an exception – this is usually served during the Lenten season.
It can be thin, like a soup, or very thick. Just like any recipe, there are dozens of different ways to make it. Gumbo varies from region to region, house to house.
The type of gumbo someone would make at home in Terrebonne Parish is not the same type of gumbo that would be served in a home in the northern part of the state.
And neither of those would be the same as a gumbo in a restaurant in New Orleans. All this to say, there is no right or wrong, as long as it’s delicious.
Gumbo variations and history
I can in no way do this subject justice in a paragraph, so I will give you the very short, very simplified version – Enslaved peoples from West Africa were brought to the colonies in the early 1700’s. The word for okra is ki ngombo, or, in its shortened form, gombo in several West African languages.
The Choctaw (the Indigenous Americans in Louisiana), used ground sassafras leaves, or filé powder, to thicken soups and stews. This was often used in the winter when okra wasn’t in season.
Gumbo is an intersection of several cultures existing in one pot.
The history of gumbo and where it came from is a long one. You can read all about it here, if you like.
Ingredients for this langostino gumbo recipe
To make langostino gumbo, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Flavorless oil – canola or grapeseed are good options.
- All purpose flour – combined with oil for the roux.
- The trinity – onions, celery and green pepper. You cannot substitute green pepper for red or yellow, it’s not the same.
- Garlic – more is better.
- Bay leaves – smell your bay leaves. If they aren’t fragrant, it’s time to get a new bottle.
- Stock – seafood stock or broth is best, but a light chicken stock or broth will also do the trick.
- Okra – if you dislike okra, you can omit it, but give it a chance if you’re on the fence.
- Tomato – the acid in tomato helps to break down the slime in okra, plus it provides another layer of flavor, and that’s never a bad thing.
- Salt, pepper and cayenne pepper, or my homemade Cajun seasoning
- Langostino tails – thawed overnight and drained.
Tools and equipment
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Before we get started, you’ll need a few things to make a pot of gumbo.
First, a large stock pot or Dutch oven. It should hold 7 – 8 quarts. Second, invest in a good cutting board. Ideally, one that can go in the dishwasher to be sanitized.
Lastly, a good chef’s knife. Take proper care of it and it will last forever.
Stages of roux
Roux is a mixture of equal parts fat and flour. The fat can be oil, which is what we’ve used here, butter, duck fat, etc.
There are a few things that happen when cooking a roux. First, it starts out a very light color. This is a white roux. At this stage it has great thickening power, but tastes a bit raw.
Second, is a blond roux. The color will begin to darken just a bit. There isn’t a huge difference between a white and a blond roux, but it will have less of a raw taste.
The longer you cook it, the darker it becomes. However, the other major change that happens is the loss of thickening power.
Next is a medium roux. This is the color of peanut butter. At this stage, it starts to develop some flavor.
The last stage of a roux is a dark roux (not pictured) and at this stage, it is the color of chocolate. I like to stop mine a bit before it gets to that point.
I like the roux when it is the color of milk chocolate. It’s about the halfway point between a medium and a dark roux. It’s personal preference.
The other option is to buy a jar of roux.
In this recipe, there are three ingredients that serve as thickeners for the langostino gumbo.
- Roux – see above for stages of roux.
- Okra – If you are not a fan of okra, you can omit it, but the gumbo won’t be the same.
- Gumbo filé powder – ground sassafras leaves.
How to make this langostino gumbo recipe
First, make the roux. This will take 30 – 45 minutes. Don’t rush it, you will regret it later if you do.
Then, add in the diced onions and let them cook for about 20 minutes.
Next add the celery, bell pepper, garlic, okra, tomato and bay leaves to the pot. Cover to let the vegetables smother, or sweat, for 20 minutes.
Add half of the stock to deglaze the pan. Give it a stir, scraping up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Cover and let it simmer for another 20 minutes.
Finally, it’s time to add the langostinos to the gumbo. Add the remaining stock and the thawed langostino tails, give it a stir and let it simmer another 5 minutes, just to warm the seafood through.
What to serve with langostino gumbo
Gumbo is often served with hard boiled eggs and pickled vegetables. Be sure to have a bottle of hot sauce, white or brown rice and a handful of fresh herbs for garnish.
- Pickled banana peppers
- Hard boiled eggs or potato salad
- Pickled okra
- Pickled radishes
- Gumbo filé
- Hot sauce
- White rice
- Green onions
Tips for success
Gumbo takes time. Plan to make it on a day when you’ll be home, so you can put all of your love into it. Please don’t try to rush the process, you’ll be disappointed in the end product if you do.
Make it the day before you plan to serve it. But, reserve the langostino tails for the day you plan to serve the gumbo.
Have your garnishes ready to serve with the langostino gumbo. See the list above! You can cook the rice ahead of time as well, or if you’re really in a pinch, order it from the takeout restaurant.
Langostino gumbo FAQ’s
If it is your first time making gumbo, don’t fret. It takes time, but it isn’t difficult.
For this langostino gumbo, you’ll need about 2 1/2 hours. This is mostly hands-off time when vegetables or the roux is cooking.
You can substitute shrimp for the langostinos.
The roux will add flavor the gumbo, as will the filé powder. You can add hot sauce as well to bring a bit of heat to it.
Yes, you can. It is actually encouraged. Gumbo is even better the next day. Just wait until the day you are serving it to add the langostino tails.
Yes. However, I have a preferred method if I’m making a big batch and saving some for later. Take the gumbo to the step just before you’d add the extra stock and langostinos. Freeze it at this point. Later, add the remaining quart of stock and the seafood.
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Langostino gumbo is a delicious & flavorful meal, perfect for a chilly evening.
- 1/2 cup flavorless oil, such as canola or grapeseed
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 large onions, diced (about 3 cups)
- 3 stalks celery diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 large green bell pepper, diced (about 1 cup)
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 ounces okra, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
- 1 Roma tomato, cored and quartered
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 quarts stock, seafood or chicken
- 1 lb. langostino tails, thawed and drained
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
- In a heavy-bottomed stock pot or Dutch oven, combine oil and flour over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently until roux is the color of milk chocolate, about 30 - 45 minutes, depending on your stove.
- Add diced onions, stir to combine. Cover, lower heat to medium low and cook 20 minutes.
- Next, add celery, bell pepper, garlic, okra, tomato and bay leaves. Season with salt, pepper and cayenne, or my homemade Cajun seasoning. Stir to combine, cover and cook and additional 20 minutes.
- Uncover pot, add half of the stock and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pot (this is deglazing). Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Finally, add remaining stock and thawed langostino tails. Simmer for 5 minutes, just to warm the langostino through. Serve over rice.
Gumbo takes time, please plan ahead. It's even better the next day, so planning ahead is encouraged!
Please see post for details information on making gumbo.
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Serving Size:2 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 392Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 528mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 2gSugar: 8gProtein: 16g
Nutrition information calculated by a third-party company as a courtesy. It is intended as a guideline only.
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