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Shrimp and Okra Gumbo
July 28, 2005

I'm on a budget and told myself I would only make this recipe with food I already had in the kitchen. So...I substituted a bag of Trader Joe's frozen pre-cooked shrimp (about $3) for the 2 lbs of fresh; I used a red pepper from my garden in lieu of the green; and I added two chopped-up pregrilled chicken breasts. I also reduced the water to 8 cups as suggested by previous reviewers. I sauteed the okra for half an hour, dumped the rest of the ingredients in the pot and set it to simmer...and then ran out to do errands for an hour and a half. I came back, spiced/salted the gumbo, and dished it out. The recipe turned out well; surely it would be best with the freshest raw ingredients, but given my restrictions, the soup turned out far better than canned gumbo and cheaper than the more purist version. Highly recommended.

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