File Gumbo


  • 1/2 lb. margarine
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 sprigs parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, finely chopped
  • 4 toes garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 C flour
  • 1 gallon shellfish stock or water
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 lb. smoked ham, diced
  • 6 crabs (cleaned and quartered)
  • 1/2 lb. hot sausage (1/4″ slices)
  • 1/2 lb. shrimp (peeled and deveined, heads and shells reserve for stock)
  • 1 Tbs. thyme
  • 2 Tbs. file powder
  • fresh cooked rice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Place margarine at bottom of a large soup pot. Add celery, onion, parsley, green pepper and garlic. Saute and then simmer for 15-20 mins. over low heat. Add flour and stir constantly for 15 more minutes. Add stock or water and bay leaves. Heat over medium flame for 20 minutes. Stir in ham, crabs, sausages and cook for 30 minutes. Bring to a boil and keep stirring to avoid sticking. When pot returns to boil, add shrimp, thyme, salt and pepper. Allow to return to the boiling point again. Remove if needed. Finally, stir in file powder and serve immediately over fresh rice.

Serves: 10-12

Source: “The Legends of Louisiana Cookbook”

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