My only rule is don’t be bland. I love the spice of life! Some days I feel cool like a vanilla bean in ice cream. Other days I am comforting like pot roast and potatoes with carrots, onions, garlic and bay leaves. In every recipe of days, I don’t divulge all my secrets. Every creator worth her salt keeps secrets.
I have days when I feel like a delicious pot of gumbo; a layered goodness that begins with a simple roux…just flour and oil mixed to the perfect consistency, stirred patiently over a steady heat until the moment is right. (You know to add the stock of your choice with the color of the paste and at the first whiff of burnt peanuts.) Trial and error is the way you learn to make your roux. Next the Holy Trinity of Cajun cooking gets thrown in the pot…onions, celery and bell pepper, chopped to your personal preference. Add freshly diced tomatoes, (or canned) and fresh sliced okra, (or frozen). I always boil a whole chicken for my stock, then take meat from the bone and add to pot. This is good, but adding deveined shrimp, whole crab, or lump crab meat, crawfish, redfish…any combination that appeals to you. A sausage gumbo is good if you use a good link sausage. In my neck of the woods, that’s Conecuh link sausage. Experiment with this as all cooks do and yes, I have secret ingredients I add too. It takes time to cook this and serve it over rice. Yep. I feel like a gumbo some days, complicated and time consuming, but delicious and worth the effort.
Seasoning my life…expanded by many cultural cuisines learned by traveling the world as a third culture kid. I can be anything but bland. Never. Ever. Bland