Foodiva's Kitchen: International Incident Party: Vegetarian Party Gumbo with (Vegan) Andouille Sausage

Sunday, May 15, 2011

International Incident Party: Vegetarian Party Gumbo with (Vegan) Andouille Sausage


I very nearly headed over to New Orleans once because I heard the restaurants there served up crabs as big as dinner plates, but unfortunately, got detoured to Florida instead (not that Florida's any less lovely, mind). Anyway, the point here is that I missed the opportunity to sample authentic Louisianan Gumbo. Where I am living right now, Louisiana just seems very far away... even though it isn't, not really.


Imagine my surprise when Penny of Jeroxie blog announced the theme of this month's IIP - Gumbo. I had to Google it up to see how gumbo actually looked like and what ingredients made it up. While the most well-known gumbos apparently contains seafood or fowl with added sausage, there's also the meatless gumbo z'herbes that's composed of slow-cooked greens. I decided on a vegetarian version, one less complicated than gumbo z'herbes, with added Andouille sausage. Or rather, a vegan take on Andouille.   

Vegan Andouille sausage ingredients 
Clockwise from top left: Black pepper, oregano, fennel seeds, butter beans, spelt flour, chilli powder, cumin, garlic

I made the sausages first, as they needed to be stewed with the rest of the gumbo ingredients. I used the same method as my lentil sausages in a previous IIP, but substituted the lentil flour with spelt flour, tofu with butter beans, while tapioca flour/starch remained as the 'glue' binding the sausage together. The spicy sausages were rolled extra-chunky (1.5 inch diameter) so they could stand up to the stewing process. 



When I think of New Orleans, I think of Mardi Gras and hence, no gumbo of mine would be complete without accompanying party masks made out of pie crust dough. (Just halve the recipe here to make about 10 masks - leave out the seasonings). The buttery, flaky masks were a delicious replacement for bread or rice and definitely added a bit of festivity to the dish. I know...my masks were brown-ish. Browner than I intended because between the manic vegetable-chopping, sausage-rolling and attending to my little helper's petulant needs, I forgot the masks were still baking in the oven. Until, that was, my nose reminded me...


A vegetable stew needn't be stereotypically dull nor all green in composition, so I deliberately chose the most colorful vegetables - red bell pepper, carrots, baby corn, french beans, white radish and of course, a gumbo just wouldn't be complete, apparently, without okra. Between the okra and roux, the stew thickened up really, really well.


Never having tasted gumbo before this (nor cooked it, for that matter), I didn't know what to expect out of this recipe. There wasn't anything in my mental palate to compare to this to any other gumbos. My verdict: other than it being slightly spicy, this vegan party gumbo tasted ridiculously good and made me all warm and fuzzy eating it. Now that's definitely a feeling worth replicating again another day!

This six-vegetable and sausage gumbo would make party-goer joyous!

Finally putting this poor guy out of his misery...

Other International Incident Party-goers will also be sharing their gumbos with the rest of the blogosphere today. If you're curious about how they've turned out, click on the the thumbnails below to have a peek.

Vegan Andouille Sausage
Makes 3 thick sausages (5-inches)
Ingredients:
1 cup canned butter beans, drained
3/4 cup cold vegetable broth or water
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
6 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 cup spelt flour
1 tablespoon tapioca starch
1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds, ground
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, ground
1 teaspoon chilli powder or cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano or 6 fresh oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Method:
1. Before mixing your ingredients, get your steaming apparatus ready, bring water to a full boil. The rest of the recipe comes together very quickly.
2. Have ready 3 sheets each of parchment paper and tin foil. Throw all the ingredients together in a food processor and mix until it forms a rather soft dough. Add the water gradually, you don't want the mixture to be runny.
3. Divide dough into 3 portions. Spoon one portion onto parchment paper placed on top of a tin foil. Mold into a 5-inch log. Wrap parchment paper in tin foil and twist the ends tight. Don’t worry too much about shaping it, it will snap into shape while it’s steaming because this recipe is awesome!
3. Place wrapped sausages in steamer and steam for 45 minutes. Let it cool for 10-15 minutes before opening and slicing.

Vegetable Gumbo with Vegan Andouille Sausage
Serves 4-5
Ingredients:
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup flour
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced finely
1cup red bell pepper, deseeded and sliced
1 cup carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup French beans, sliced
1 cup white radish, peeled and sliced
2 cups okra, sliced
3-4 cups vegetable broth or water
2 vegan Andouille sausages, thickly sliced
1 teaspoon thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method:
1. Stir together oil and flour in a heavy-bottomed pan until smooth. Cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, or until roux turns a dark caramel color, stirring constantly.
2. Add onion, garlic and all the vegetables and cook 5 minutes or until vegetables are softened. Stir in 3 cups vegetable broth.
3. Add sliced sausages, thyme, bay leaves, basil, soy sauce, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 40 minutes, or until carrots are tender. Add more water if it gets too thick and adjust seasonings. Serve with crusty masks/rice/bread.


44 comments:

Alina---Explora Cuisine said...

I've never heard of gumbo before, very interesting and the small party masks are great, awesome work!

penny aka jeroxie said...

OMG. You made your own sausage and also the mask? Ingenious! The sausage recipe is bookmarked. Will like to experiment with that.

leaf (the indolent cook) said...

What a fantastic effort! I've never had gumbo either but that looks really good!

Foodiva said...

Thanks Alina, well now you've seen gumbo, hope you'll try it!

Foodiva said...

Penny, the storebought sausages I have are usually quite bland, so I thought I'd make my own. These babies were SPICY, so just go easy on the chilli if your gumbo is also spicy. I think the masks probably stole the show for the gumbo, they're definitely worth making!

Foodiva said...

Thank you, Leaf! Glad you dropped by.

Raji said...

Vegetarian sausage..wow..suits me. Lovely ingredients used for that..all very flavourful. And the mask is definitely the show stopper :)

blackbookkitchendiaries said...

hi Maya, i really love this post:) sorry i have been missing out on your post lately, been away for awhile now. hope youre ok and thank you for sharing this with us.

GourmetGetaways said...

I love your masks! Whenever I think of New Orleans I think of Mardi gras so I absolutely "get" the mask. Great thinking, gorgeous dish.

Foodiva said...

Thank you, Raji. The only sausages I've made at home are the vegetarian kind as I don't have a sausage-making machine. These ones were definitely full of flavor and added an extra dimension to the gumbo!

Xinmei @ Pudding Pie Lane said...

When you said gumbo and New Orleans it reminded me the the Princess and the Frog movie. Have you ever seen it? I think they ate this all the time in it, I've never tried it but I really want to. And I want to make those masks too, you are very dedicated to your food presentation, and it shows :)

Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite said...

Maya - you made your own sausage? Above and beyone the call of duty. But oh your gumbo looks intrigujngly good. Bravo on a lovely challenge!

msihua said...

I can't believe you mad your own sausage!! And your own edible masks!! Fantastic job!

manda said...

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By Lose Weight Fast

Adriana said...

Maya, your gumbo looks fantastic! I don't think I've met a gumbo I haven't liked yet. I admire you for making your own veggie sausages - beautiful spice mix!

Sandra said...

Wow Maya..woww..this is so cool! I love your photos,recipe and presentation, and how awesome are those masks..fantastic!!!

Carolyn said...

Ooo, I love this take on Gumbo! I am not vegan at all but I'd love to try it.

Food Glorious Food! said...

WOw! You space is fantastic! I will be following you for more interesting ideas and would like to invite you to stop by my blog too if you have the time :)

http://personalfoodjournal.blogspot.com/

michelangelo in the kitchen said...

This my is my kind of international dining! So entertainingly delicious and good for you too! You've done it again Maya. This is simply delightful!

Trix said...

Well if it made you all warm and fuzzy then you did it right!! Your vegan version is simply brilliant, and those masks are a stroke of genius - so whimsical. You did a great job with your vegan gumbo (believe me, cuz gumbo is one of my favorite things!)

Amy said...

This sounds delicious! Vegan gumbo would be awesome, and I love the addition of the cute Mardi Gras masks :)!

Lizzy said...

Your party masks are SO cool! Just gorgeous photos, too...makes me long for some gumbo!

yummychunklet said...

What a tasty looking dish! Love your masks!

Tiffany said...

You made your own vegan andouille!?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (That's me screaming virtually!). You ARE MY HERO! This dish is amazing!

Cheap Ethnic Eatz said...

WOW, you made very sausage, that is so cool! And I love the masks. And the colors of all your great veggies. Glad you loved it so much upon your first gumbo tasting.

Zazuza said...

and now I miss New Orleans :)). I was there two months ago, and gumbo was one of my favourite dishes! your version is a must now, let me see if I can find in Austria everything I need :). greetings and best wishes!

Nami @ Just One Cookbook said...

Oh my goodness! I love gumbo but never tried making it at home... I love a fan meal like this!

Now Serving said...

this is such an awesome post! absolutely LOVE you masks :)))

Now Serving said...

following you - please do check out my blog and love to have you follow me too :) cheers, again, priya

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table said...

I love that you made vegan sausage! What a cool idea and so versatile. :)

Spicie Foodie said...

Maya I am loving your Vegan Gumbo! Also the vegan sausage is a great recipe that I want to try eating with other dishes too. Of course you added a little extra to your perfect gumbo with the bread masks, they look great. Just think of them as being a little extra tanned :)

Magic of Spice said...

What an amazing vegan gumbo, and I adore your masks...very festive :)

aipi said...

I would call it talent with food. You have crafted that beautifully and the effort shows. The vegan sausage obviously is a winner for us vegetarians.
US Masala

Drick said...

that is one heck of a bowl of gumbo, and I love the eatable masks, perfect and festive.... you got the spirit of the dish going, that's for sure...

Suman Singh said...

Wow..vegetarian sausage sounds interesting and quite innovative one..And I love the masks and that bowl of gumbo..just awesome..

Foodiva said...

Tiffany, you're a scream, girl!! LOL.

Foodiva said...

Nancy@Spicie Foodie - you put it so well...yes, my masks were tanned (ie. very nearly sunburnt!). Too many distractions the day I made this. LOL.

Foodiva said...

Aipi, so glad you liked the sausages. I love this steaming sausage technique, only because it's such a breeze to make!

Foodiva said...

Drick, coming from the King of Gumbo, that is one heck of a compliment! Thanks :-).

Foodiva said...

Suman, glad you stopped by. Always happy to see someone new leaving a comment, and thanks so much for taking the time!

Barbara Bakes said...

Wow - I'm so impressed with your gumbo. The masks really take it to the next level. So fun!

spcookieqeeun said...

Hi Miss Maya, came to see what's crack-a-lackin over here! As amazing as this dish, I have a hard time believe you have yet to rock the macaron scene. I can only imagine what you are going to come up with. Those masks are so darn cool.
-Gina-

Diethood.com said...

Ok, the masks are amazing! You are so talented! And that gumbo (can't believe it's vegan) sounds incredible!

Jenny (VintageSugarcube) said...

Maya- Just when I thought I couldn't be any more amazed at what you come up with, then I log on and I'm in utter ahhhmazement. That gumbo would be a hot ticket in Southern Cali. I'm going to share this recipe with vegan & vegetarian friends. Hearts and Smoooches to ya. :)

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