Gumbo is one of the stars of Creole cuisine. Classic gumbo reflects key Creole ingredients and preparation methods. It starts with a brown roux, or cooked fat-flour mixture, and it is seasoned with diced onions, celery and green bell pepper. Creole chefs call this combination of aromatic vegetables the holy trinity.
Okra flavors and thickens many gumbo recipes. Fresh or frozen okra works equally well in this recipe.
To keep the oil and flour mixture from burning, use your heaviest Dutch oven or saucepan and whisk constantly while browning the roux.
To make Chicken Gumbo, omit shrimp and use boneless skinless chicken thigh meat cut into 1-inch pieces. Add chicken pieces along with the tomatoes.