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Gumbo z'Herbes | Great Performances


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Gumbo z’Herbes
by Suzannah Schneider, Sustainability Connector

Image via Epicurious

This is a rich dish to celebrate some of the fresh new greens of spring. Rumor has it the more varieties of greens you use, the more friends you'll make in the new season. I made this dish for a recent lunch at a generous CSA member's home -- the magic seems to be working!

Adapted from The Washington Post

2.5 lbs Greens (a combination of mustard greens, kale, parsley, and other market greens), washed, big stems removed, and chopped into 1-inch pieces
8 cups No-salt-added vegetable broth
Water, as needed
1/2 cup Vegetable oil
1/2 cup Flour
1 large Onion, diced
1 Green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 Red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
3 ribs Celery, finely chopped
6 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
Scant 2 teaspoons Ground cayenne pepper
2 tsp Smoked paprika
2 tsp Sea salt, plus more to taste
1 tsp Freshly ground black pepper

12 cups White rice
Scallion tops, chopped on an angle, for garnish


Place the greens in a large pot; cover with the broth, adding enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium or medium-low so the liquid is barely bubbling. Cook the greens until very tender, about 40 minutes. Remove from the heat.

While the greens are cooking, make a roux: Heat the oil in a heavy pot over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, whisk in the flour until smooth. Reduce the heat to medium-low; cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture turns a light brown color, 10 to 20 minutes.

Stir in the onion, green and red bell peppers, celery, garlic, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes.

Drain the cooked greens, reserving the liquid. Transfer the greens to the pot of vegetables. Measure the reserved cooking liquid and add 8 cups of it to the pot. Increase the heat to bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat until the liquid is barely bubbling. Cook for 10 minutes, just to incorporate all the flavors. Taste, and add salt and pepper as needed.

Divide the rice among serving bowls, and ladle a cup of hot gumbo over each portion. Garnish with the scallions.

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