This Gluten-Free Maryland Style Crab and Shrimp Gumbo is great for New Years or any special celebration. Chock full of crab, shrimp and langoustine, it is a treat that your family and guests will appreciate.
I can’t believe the New Year is already here! With all the frenzy surrounding Christmas, I always look forward to just hanging out and relaxing at home with my family the week between Christmas and New Years. It’s a great time to make some comfort food for me and my family. I actually find cooking relaxing, so stirring a big pot of gumbo over the stove is a great way for me to gather my thoughts. Chopping, sauteing, stirring, tasting, smelling…these are the pleasures of cooking.
I try to start and end each day thanking God for the many blessings my family has been given, and at the start of the New Year, I reflect back on how fortunate I am to have a roof over my head, food on the table, clothes to wear, and good health.
This gumbo recipe is bountiful with a variety of seafood – crab, shrimp and langoustine. It is a celebratory dish that represents the abundant life we all live. We might not always think we live an abundant life if we measure that by what material possessions we own or how many friends we have. It’s always easy to look around and wish for more.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve actually gone the opposite direction. I find myself buying fewer new clothes and home furnishings, and spending more money on memories, whether it’s a family vacation or a meal out with family or friends. Memories with my family and friends are far more important to me than any material possessions. Quality friendships are more important to me than counting how many friends I have. I also get a huge amount of inspiration from cancer patients that I cook for in my community. Their positive outlook on life despite their circumstances makes anything I am challenged with pale in comparison. These intangible rewards are immeasurable.
This time, next year, my twin sons will be in college, and I’ll have just one son at home with me. I’m mindful of that fact more than ever. So, cooking for my family is really important to me – it’s my way of showing them how much I love them. And during the holiday season, cooking for my family and friends is my gift to them.
I came up with this Maryland Style Crab and Shrimp Gumbo recipe as a way to combine two of my kids’ favorite meals – steamed Maryland crabs with Old Bay seasoning and Crawfish and Crab Gumbo. I grew up in Maryland so whenever we visit my folks, the boys love eating steamed Maryland crabs with Old Bay seasoning. They also developed a love for Crawfish and Crab Gumbo about 7 years ago, when one of the twins was playing in the 10-Year Old Little League World Series in Louisiana. So, what could be more special than everything they love combined into one dish.
Gumbo is traditionally made with a base roux, which is typically made with flour and lots of oil. To make this healthier and gluten-free, I used toasted sweet rice flour and a lot less oil. The vegetables used to flavor gumbo are traditionally onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic and tomatoes. To give this gumbo a Maryland kick, I added Old Bay seasoning in addition to Cajun seasoning.
Thank you for your loyal readership throughout the year and I look forward to sharing more healthy and delicious recipes with you in the New Year.