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New Orleans Seafood Gumbo

2 lbs. fresh shrimp
2 tbsp. flour
2 tbsp. cooking oil
2 onions, chopped
3 tbsp. parsley, chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 bay leaves
2 qts. water, boiling
1 lb. crab meat
1 pt. oysters
1 lb. smoked sausage
1 tbsp. file


Peel shrimp and set aside in refrigerator. Make a dark roux of the flour and oil, cooking over high heat and stirring constantly until dark brown in color. Be very careful not to burn roux. Add shrimp to roux and cook, stirring constantly, for 3 to 5 minutes over medium heat. When shrimp are pink and firm add boiling water. Stir in onions, parsley, garlic and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook over medium heat about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning and thickness. If you prefer a thicker gumbo, make a paste of cornstarch and hot water and gradually add, stirring constantly until desired thickness reached. Cut smoked sausage into 1 inch pieces and add to gumbo. Cook an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Add file just before serving. Serve over a mound of hot rice.


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