Rainbow Gumbo

(posted by Emily) 

Fat Tuesday was this week, and in celebration of Mardi Gras, here is an easy vegan gumbo to have any time of year! 

Rainbow Gumbo

3/4 c flour (I used Bob's Red Mill GF AP)
3/4 c olive oil
2 large onions, diced
2 bell peppers diced
4 celery ribs, diced
4 carrots, diced (I used purple and orange carrots)
1 small head of cauliflower, stems removed and cut into small pieces 
8-10 okra, sliced
2 cans red beans, drained and rinsed 
4 tomatoes, diced
2 bay leaves
sprig (or 2) of fresh thyme
4 teaspoons Herbes de Provence
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
salt and pepper
8 cups (64 oz) veggie broth
Brown rice, to add to your bowl

**Disclaimer--I know this recipe calls for a lot of chopping, but it's totally worth it. That's the most labor intensive part, I promise!**

Begin by mixing the flour and oil in a sauté or frying pan to create your roux. Heat over medium high heat, and stir constantly until the mixture has turned caramel brown in color. This may take 15-20 minutes, and the mixture may feel grainy. That's okay! I was lucky enough to have a handy husband to do this portion of the recipe prep for me while I chopped veg. Once the roux is finished, remove from heat. I poured mine into a bowl and set it aside until I needed it. 

In a large stock pot, combine all veggies except the okra. Add salt and pepper to release the water in the veggies, and sauté until soft, about 8 minutes--no need to add oil! Add the okra, beans, and ground spices--stir to combine. Add in the roux and stir until the mixture is coating the veggies. Slowly add in the tomatoes, thyme, and veggie broth, and stir yet again. Finally, add the bay leaves and allow to simmer, covered, on low heat for at least 45 minutes. 

The stew will thicken thanks to the roux--if you'd like things a bit thicker, simmer uncovered for the last 10 minutes. Don't forget salt and pepper to taste!

Serve immediately, with a scoop or two of brown rice on top. 

Delicious! Rick added a bit of cayenne to his, and we were both happy campers! Enjoy!


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