The amazing world of gumbo
July 29, 2018 1:01 AM Subscribe
Let's start with the biggest red herring of all, the oft-repeated idea that gumbo is a variation of bouillabaisse, the classic fish stew from Provence. This notion is repeated everywhere from slapdash food blogs to peer-reviewed academic books. It's also completely wrong.For Serious Eats Robert Moss writes about the origins of gumbo.
In a follow-up article, Moss looks at the rise of roux as a staple ingredient in gumbo and how it's largely due to one particularly influential cook and culinary writer:
"We threw out the interchangeable French menu every New Orleans restaurant had had for a million years," Ella Brennan told Tom Fitzmorris. "We replaced it with local everything." Out went the trout amandine, the original almonds and beurre noir supplanted by local pecans and a Cajun-seasoned brown sauce. The crab meat Imperial was sent to the showers, replaced by crab and corn bisque.
Perhaps the most significant change was the gumbo. "The gumbo I did at Commander's was a roux gumbo," Prudhomme told Brett Anderson of the Times-Picayune in 2005. "To my knowledge, it had never been done before. It was chicken and andouille, down-and-dirty Cajun. It was what Mama used to do." too.
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