Chef Calvin Coleman’s Gulf Seafood and Gator Sausage Gumbo
spring, summer, fall, winter
- 1 lb. smoked alligator and pork sausage, cut into 1-inch slices
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 cup diced onions
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup diced celery
- 1/4 cup minced garlic
- 2 1/2 quarts hot shellfish stock
- 2 lbs. 50 to 60 shrimp, peeled, deveined and divided
- 1 lb. claw crabmeat
- 1 lb. jumbo lump crabmeat
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 3/4 tsp. Cajun seasoning
- 1/4 cup sliced green onions, white and green parts
- 1/2 cup chopped parsley
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- In a heavy-bottomed stockpot, cook sausage over medium-high heat to render fat. Remove sausage and set aside.
- Add vegetable oil to rendered fat. Whisk in flour, stirring constantly until caramel-colored roux is achieved. Add onions, bell pepper, celery and garlic and sauté 3 to 5 minutes until vegetables are wilted. Blend in sausage and sauté an additional 3 to 5 minutes.
- Slowly add hot shellfish stock, one ladle at a time, stirring constantly to incorporate. Add half of shrimp and claw crabmeat. Bring mixture to a low boil, reduce to simmer and cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Additional water may be added during cooking process to retain volume.
- Fold in the remaining shrimp and lump crabmeat, then season mixture with bay leaf, dried thyme and Cajun seasoning. Return to a low boil and cook approximately 5 minutes, stirring often. Stir in green onions and parsley, then adjust seasonings to taste using salt and pepper.
Serving Suggestions: Serve over cooked rice.
A Mississippi Gulf Coast native, Chef Coleman’s career spans 31 years in country clubs, hotels, restaurants and catering venues from Pensacola, Florida to St. Louis, Missouri and Chicago, Illinois. Returning home in 1994, he took over the family business, Naomi’s Catering, Inc. in Gulfport, Mississippi.
Coleman’s collection of awards includes Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce Tapestry Award in 2005 and 2006; MHRA State Caterer of the Year in 2005, 2006 and 2007; City of Biloxi Service Appreciation Award 2007 and 2008.
Coleman also served as a board member for MHRA–Jackson for five years. He currently represents MHRA Gulf Coast on several industry-related Advisory Boards.