When you're ready to cook the beans, start by giving your veggies a sweat in a little oil. Season with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, cayenne and thyme. As the veggies soften, add minced garlic.
After your roux is ready, toss in the trinity. Season with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, cayenne and thyme. As the veggies soften, add minced garlic. Sound familiar?
Here are the roux and veggies for the étouffée, note the darker color of this roux.
Once the veggies are soft, drop the mixture into the hot shrimp stock, stirring well after each addition. Now add the okra and tomatoes. Reseason and simmer until the mixture is thick and the flavors have melded, about 45 minutes. Add your reserved shrimp and other seafood. I added crab. When I can find them, I add crawfish or langostino. Make sure the heat is on low and cook just until the shrimp is done. Toss in some filé powder.
A note about rice: the gumbo, chicken etouffee and red beans are all served with rice. You have to season your rice. I can make this real easy for you. Once you get your water in the pot, add several shakes of Tony Chachere's. That's all you need! Tony Chachere's is also used to season the above dishes. Gumbo tasting flat? Add some Tony Chachere's.
Tools of the trade: