How to avoid it? Keep an eye on your cooking and make sure there is enough liquid in the pot. Stir regularly and frequently to stop the build-up on the bottom of the pan. Use a heavy-based pan that evenly distributes the heat. Consider investing in a heat diffuser as almost all pans have hotter and cooler spots. Turn the heat under the pan to low.
Then don’t. Eat it raw. And eat lots of it. It is so good for you. When you cook it, particularly for a long time, this creates the perfect conditions for the breakdown of the beneficial sulphur compounds, the ones associated with a reduction in certain cancers in people who eat a lot of cabbage, into stinky hydrogen sulphide. Rotten egg gas.
“Bugger!” It’s the catch cry of every home cook when they discover their food has caught on the bottom of the pan. What is happening is that starch and protein from the dish you are cooking begin to bond with the base of the pan through which the heat is transferred. This heat transfer point is much hotter than the rest of the liquid, which will only reach 100C – the boiling point of the water in it. Cabbage is perfect for pickling and fermenting. It is perfect for finely shredding or chopping and mixing with other vegetables and dressing to make the perfect accompaniment to grills. Use purple cabbage, grated carrot, parsley and red capsicum to make a coleslaw. At first the starch and protein form new compounds in what is known as the Maillard effect. Then, if not swept away by the deft stroke of a wooden spoon, the compounds will begin to carbonise. On this rough surface, more starch and protein will accumulate and soon you will have a blackened crust.
I’m doing pea and ham soups and curries in my big Le Creuset pot on a gas stove and I’m having problems with the food catching on the bottom. What causes catching? Are there ways to prevent it or stop it when it starts? P. Fyfe
The best way to cook cabbage to retain its flavour, colour and stop the kitchen from smelling is to chop the cabbage leaves into matchbox-sized squares or diamonds and cook in a wok with a little oil. You could start by frying some speck, then some finely sliced pieces of granny smith in the hot fat and then the cabbage. Add a little salt and pepper, perhaps a pinch of caraway seeds. Serve with a grilled pork chop. Your home won’t be ruined by the smell of rotten egg gas at dinner but quite possibly could be later on, depending on your metabolism.This winter I was making pea and ham soup and discovered I’d run out of split peas. I removed the slow-cooked ham hock and bay leaves from the pot and poured a bag of frozen peas into the stock. I removed the flesh from the hock, returned it to the pan, cooked the peas and hock together for just 10 minutes, checked for seasoning and blitzed the lot in the blender. It was superb, smooth and creamy, and because the peas had cooked so quickly, there was no time for them to catch.
5. Add meat. Add chicken, sausage, and shrimp and taste. Add more seasonings to your liking–salt, pepper, chicken bullion paste, garlic, more Joe’s stuff or more chicken broth–until you reach the perfect flavor.
4. Add to large pot. Add chicken broth veggies, parsley, and roux to the pot and stir well. (Skim off any foam that may rise to the top of the pot.) Stir in cajun seasoning, to taste.
1. Make the roux. in a large pot, combine flour and oil and cook, stirring constantly on medium low heat. You have to be careful to stir it constantly, on medium low heat, so that you don’t burn it. It’s easy, but takes patience. The darker the roux, the richer the flavor!
This Authentic New Orleans Gumbo is made with a dark roux, vegetables, chicken, sausage, and shrimp, and served over rice. This is a beloved recipe shared with me by a native New Orleanian.I hade a double batch and used 2 cups flour: 1.5cup oil. When I make Roux, I normally mix, go through a dry/sticky phase before it turns liquidy. I stirred for an hour overall to get the right color, never had an issue using her measurements, it went through all the correct phases. I coked at about 3.5(of 10) on our glasstop stove.I’m so sorry you had trouble–the roux can be tricky and is not a set ratio–notice I say, “add a little more flour or oil as needed to reach this consistency”. Also a good roux takes a long time (much longer than a few minutes). There are hundreds of commenters here who have had great success–hope you get to try it again!As you probably have gathered, I love making comfort food style recipes that use lots of fresh produce and real ingredients. This gumbo is no exception, and if you like this then I know you’ll love Jambalaya and Instant Pot Red Beans and Rice.This recipe makes quite a lot but it also freezes really well. To freeze, allow it to cool completely and store it in a freezer safe container (separate from the rice) for 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove or in the microwave.
What kind of pot is best for gumbo?
A pot that resembles a very stout rocket ship or chunky UFO is the preferred gumbo-making vessel for many a grand-mère (that’s grandma, Cajun style) across South Louisiana. Cached
3. Brown the sausage. Spread the sausage in a single layer on a hot, large skillet. Once browned, flip each one over individually, to make sure they all get nice and brown on both sides.2. Chop the veggies. When you’re ready to make your gumbo, start by chopping celery, onions, bell pepper, parsley. I love the freshness from the green bell pepper, onion, celery and parsley. You can also add okra, if you want. Add it at the same time as the other vegetables.6. Serve warm over hot cooked rice. This recipe tastes even better the next day as the flavors have a chance to blend. If you’re really wanting to go all out, serve it with a side of homemade potato salad!
Jambalaya is primarily a rice dish (think paella) while gumbo is more of a stew that is thickened with a roux and made with chicken, sausage, and/or seafood. Both gumbo and jambalaya are often made with some similar meats and vegetables but the process of making them and flavors of the end result are completely different. Here is my favorite Jambalaya recipe!Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.
A “roux” is made with two ingredients; flour and oil, and it’s the key to any great gumbo recipe! The flour and oil are cooked and stirred together for about 30-45 minutes until it becomes dark brown almost like mud, or chocolate and the consistency of dough. The roux is what adds the deep, rich flavor to the gumbo, and it gives it it’s thick texture. Make a good roux is a labor of love, but but one that totally pays off, and you can make it ahead of time!
We had a really fun neighbor growing up who was from New Orleans and made a fantastic homemade Gumbo! I’m so thankful my Mom took him up on his offer to teach her how to make a true, authentic Gumbo! Decades later it is a beloved recipe that has become a staple in our family and we have made it hundreds of times! It is definitely in my top favorite meals of all time! Nothing tastes better on a cold winter day.
What are the 2 rules of gumbo?
Here are some handy rules from a gumbo expert: Brown your sausages. ABSOLUTELY NO wieners/hot dogs/franks in the pot. Don’t put whole, undressed crabs in the pot.
Gumbo is a project. And you can’t rush it. A really great gumbo takes the better part of a day to make, from prepping the ingredients, to making a roux, to simmering everything low and slow. Slow cooking allows all of the flavors to marry together and keeps the gumbo from burning or over-reducing. Some people say that gumbo tastes better the longer it sits, and even recommend making it a day in advance.There are so many rules to making gumbo that it can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never made it before. But don’t get too hung up on what’s “right” and “wrong.” No two gumbo recipes are alike, and chances are, there is something to debate in all of them. We’re not saying that you should go wild and add kale and quinoa to gumbo. Start with a fairly classic recipe, learn the fundamentals, then tinker with it to make it your own.
Can you cook gumbo in a regular pot?
Use a heavy-bottomed pan or pot to make gumbo and a whisk for constant stirring of the roux. Don’t rush when you cook gumbo. It’s a slow process and worth every minute of your time. Slow cooking allows all of the flavors in the gumbo to come together.
Also, pay attention to when to add your ingredients. Shrimp should be added at the end of cooking so it doesn’t get rubbery. Okra should be added during the last 30 minutes of cooking to keep its texture and to help it thicken the gumbo properly.
Sauteed chopped celery, onions, and bell pepper form the “holy trinity” in Cajun and Creole dishes. This aromatic trio is also a source of debate—some use green bell peppers, others favor red. And some cooks add garlic to the mix, which we entirely approve of.
Whether you’re in the mood for seafood gumbo, chicken and sausage gumbo, or something else entirely, check out these must-read gumbo-making tips before you get started.
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With a little experimenting, you’ll have your own version down pat in no time. Making gumbo shouldn’t be scary, but there are some tricks to getting that classic taste that defines it. It should be thicker than a soup. That’s where thickeners like roux, okra, and filé powder come in. They also add flavor, but you don’t need all three. For the roux, make sure to add enough flour so it’s similar to a paste. If your roux is too thin, your gumbo will be thin.
For the most flavor, use stock or broth in your gumbo instead of water. Whether you use chicken or vegetable stock, homemade or boxed, the stock will give your gumbo more depth and complexity.It’s hard to find a dish in the South that is more celebrated—or debated than gumbo. Well, there’s also cornbread (sugar or not), chili (beans or not), and the old East versus West barbecue debate. Southerners like to argue about food. But gumbo is a particularly controversial subject, especially among Louisianans. What goes into a gumbo varies as much as the cook making it, but there are a few rules to keep in mind. Read on for six guidelines for making a good pot of gumbo, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a first-timer.Most gumbo recipes begin with roux, and for good reason: it’s the foundation for the entire dish. Roux is flour that’s browned in fat (like oil or butter) to thicken and flavor gumbo and other Cajun dishes. Although it’s just two ingredients, the color of a roux is fiercely debated among gumbo aficionados. Many say a proper gumbo roux should be chocolate brown, for the richest flavor. Our Test Kitchen prefers butter over oil for the rich, nutty flavor. But butter burns easily, making a lighter golden brown roux. But Leah Chase, the chef behind New Orleans’ legendary restaurant Dooky Chase, is not a fan of butter in gumbo. She uses neutral oil in her gumbo roux because it has a higher smoke point, which means you can cook it darker. Whatever color you prefer, you’ll need a heavy-bottomed pan (cast iron is best) and a whisk for constant stirring. Keep a close eye on it—once you see black specks, it’s burned and you will need to start over.Gumbo is traditionally served over steamed white rice (and sometimes potato salad!), with sliced scallions and hot sauce on the side. But there’s another important finishing touch: Filé (“FEE-lay”) powder, which is made from sassafras leaves. It is typically sprinkled on individual servings to thicken and season gumbo. While you can certainly make gumbo without it, we like the spice’s earthy, slightly floral flavor. If you can’t find filé powder at a supermarket or gourmet store, order it from penzeys.com.
There are a lot of seafood gumbo recipes out there, this is why I wanted to give you a classic, basic version made with fewer ingredients than you might find in a traditional version and one that is ideal for anyone cooking for one.Making a roux isn’t difficult, however, you need to pay close attention to the roux as it cooks. You’ll need to stir constantly so that the roux doesn’t burn. If it does, you’ll need to dump it out and start over or the gumbo will have a burnt taste.
If you’ve tried this seafood gumbo recipe or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.
Joanie Zisk is the creator behind OneDishKitchen.com, the number one website for single-serving recipes. Joanie has over 10 years of experience in developing and publishing recipes, author of “The Ultimate Cooking for One Cookbook”, and a passionate home cook. Our aim is to inspire individuals with access to single-serving recipes, education, and a supportive community that will enable them to enjoy the preparation of a meal that will nourish both body and soul.Joanie, this is more or less the way I make my regular gumbo. I add a very little crab boil to my recipe. It adds another layer of spies. You must be careful with Zatarainâs oil it is very concentrated but I love it.
Welcome to One Dish Kitchen, I’m Joanie and I’m incredibly happy you’re here! Our aim is to inspire individuals with access to single serving recipes, education, and a supportive community that will enable them to enjoy the preparation of a meal that will nourish both body and soul.Louisiana Seafood Gumbo For One – This easy-to-make gumbo is perfectly spiced and filled with shrimp, fish, and the trinity of vegetables. There are many gumbo recipes but none are easier than this authentic single serving version.
Since this is a single serving fish gumbo recipe, you might have a few ingredients leftover. You might like to consider using them in any of these single serving recipes:
The oil and flour are cooked and stirred together for about 10-15 minutes on the stove until it becomes the color of caramel or a penny. When I make a large pot of gumbo, it takes about 20-25 minutes to achieve this, but since we are using a smaller 2-quart pot for this recipe, it doesn’t take as long.
This is truly one of my favorite. I don’t like fish so instead I add sausage love it. Finding this website has been a godsend to me. Cooking for one has been hard and these recipes are perfect. There are some I even have left overs for lunch the next day.. Thank you so much.Joanie, love your recipes! Found your seafood gumbo recipe, but was wishing for Chicken Sausage version. Any thoughts on that as small batch recipe? Thanks for all you do!
The vast majority of “fresh” shrimp sold in supermarkets were deep frozen at sea and delivered to retailers. Even though you may see a display of “fresh” shrimp at the fish counter in the store, those shrimp are the same bags of frozen shrimp you find in the freezer section that have simply been allowed to thaw out in the store before going on display. It’s hard to know how long they have been defrosted.
Made this for a friend that was yearning for shrimp gumbo. Just used shrimp and followed the rest of the recipe to a T. He almost licked the bowl clean, said it was the best he’d ever had. Thanks Joanie for all your great little recipes.Peeling and deveining shrimp is easy to do. You might consider buying shrimp that is already peeled and deveined for convenience. If not, here’s how I peel and devein shrimp:
How do you keep gumbo from sticking to the pot?
How to avoid it? Keep an eye on your cooking and make sure there is enough liquid in the pot. Stir regularly and frequently to stop the build-up on the bottom of the pan. Use a heavy-based pan that evenly distributes the heat.
Gumbo is a stew-like dish popular in Louisiana. It consists of a seafood or meat stock filled with seafood and vegetables. It is southern comfort food at its finest.
Should gumbo be thick or thin?
Making gumbo shouldn’t be scary, but there are some tricks to getting that classic taste that defines it. It should be thicker than a soup. That’s where thickeners like roux, okra, and filé powder come in. They also add flavor, but you don’t need all three.
A roux is the foundation of every Louisiana gumbo recipe. It is made with equal parts of just two ingredients: oil and flour. The roux is simply flour that is browned in fat (oil). It acts as a thickener and gives gumbo its rich flavor.
I often purchase individually frozen, head-off, peel-on shrimp for most shrimp recipes. These bags of shrimp are found in the freezer section of most supermarkets. When you are cooking for one person, this can be the most economical way to buy shrimp.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.I’m so excited about this seafood gumbo recipe. Being originally from New Orleans, creating a single serving gumbo recipe has been on my bucket list for a few years. Oh my goodness … made this tonight. It was FANTASTIC. I had cod as my white fish. The portion was generous — enough for the next day. But the hog in me ate every drop! Absolutely making this again! Thank you for this easy, flavorful one-dish gumbo! Shrimp are highly perishable. If purchasing fresh shrimp, smell the shrimp first. You don’t want any shrimp that smells like ammonia, this is a sign of spoilage. You also want to avoid shrimp that are limp, slimy, or falling apart, these are signs of decay.What we didn’t like: We’re being picky here, but all that cladding comes with added weight (and cost)—at just under eight pounds, the Cuisinart is more than a pound heavier than the average 12-quart stockpot we tested, which might be an issue for some cooks.A stockpot is almost always used to heat liquids—searing and other dry-heat methods of cooking are much less common. The faster a pot can bring water to a boil, the better. We used the exact same amount of room-temperature water (9 quarts) and heat setting (high, on an induction burner) to see how long it took for the contents to reach a rolling boil with the lid on.
The Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless Steel Stockpot is the best stockpot. Its solid construction, even heating, and wide handles make it a standout. If you’re seeking a budget-friendly model, our pick is the Cook N Home Stainless Steel Stockpot, which is less than $50. And if you’re looking to splurge, the All-Clad D3 12-Quart Stockpot is pretty great.What we liked: Tramontina’s 16-quart model is our pick for a larger capacity pot. It shares the same design as the company’s smaller 12-quart model, which performed well in our tests, except for scorching a little on the bottom during our sweating and browning test; that was enough to keep it out of our top-pick position for the 12-quart pots. (Our top pick 12-quarts, though, do not offer 16-quart options, so Tramontina is the best choice at a relatively affordable price in this case.) The Cuisinart set itself apart here, gently and evenly browning the vegetables and creating a good, even fond, without any worrying signs of burning on the bottom or corners of the pot. Other pots were more prone to scorching and charring, both on the vegetables themselves and the fond on the pots’ bottoms. Our budget pick, Cook N Home, didn’t manage the heat as evenly as the Cuisinart, but with some careful attention, you can still easily avoid burning the fond. What we didn’t like: There’s no getting around it: it’s an expensive pot. At more than double the cost of our top pick, it’s a true splurge—though one that comes with a limited lifetime warranty. It also straggled a bit in the boiling water test, but unless you’re staring at the pot and waiting, most people won’t notice. Our test field included both fully clad pots, like the All-Clad and our winning Cuisinart, as well as pots that have cladding only on the bottom. Full cladding adds weight and cost, but helps manage heat better and reduces the risk of scorching, especially in the corners where the pot wall meets the base. Lids are either tempered glass or stainless steel, and while we didn’t find the material of the lids to affect performance, we generally prefer metal lids since glass can break. After disqualifying roughly half the field, we filled the remaining pots with an equal amount of cold tap water and did laps around the test kitchen holding them with bare hands, with oven mitts, and with kitchen towels. Then we dumped the water out to gauge how comfortable they were when being tipped.Cladding is the layering of metal in a stockpot. Typically, it’s aluminum surrounded by stainless steel. A pot that has full cladding on the bottom and sides will cook more efficiently and protect against scorching. It also carries a larger price tag.
Is gumbo better the longer it cooks?
Cooking the gumbo for a good three to four hours on simmer is imperative. “The long cooking time adds time for flavors to develop and ensures a burst of flavor,” says Biffar. Make sure to give it time to let everything mesh together, this is not a dish to be rushed!
Stockpots generally come in a few sizes, measured by the quart. For most home cooks, a 12-quart stockpot will be sufficient; they are also easier to stow away in cabinets. Bulkier, larger 16-quart stockpots are incredibly useful for large-format cooking, but if you only use it once a year or so, you’ll have to decide if it’s worth the extra storage space. If you only buy one stockpot, we recommend it be a 12-quart. If space is at a premium in your kitchen, and you rarely cook in large batches, an 8-quart may even suffice.You can spend close to $400 on a stockpot, but does spending more get you a better pot? To find out, we rounded up 16 models, ranging from around $30 to nearly $383 (at the time of testing), and put them through handling and cooking tests to find the designs that work best.
Most quality stockpots are made from stainless steel. We don’t recommend aluminum stockpots, as the metal can react with acidic foods. They also warp easily over time. Avoid enameled steel—the coating may help with browning, but it will eventually crack or chip.
What we liked: Solid, sturdy, and fully clad, this stockpot excelled in all of our tests. Its wide base easily sweated mirepoix without burning and its handles were wide, flat, and a cinch to grab. Its flared lip jutted out further than other models, making it easy to pour from. This wider lip also helped the pot’s lid seat tightly. And at about a pound lighter than our top pick from Cuisinart, it was easier to maneuver.The handles have to be comfortable, sturdy, and easy to grip—the last thing you want to feel is uncertainty as you move a large pot of scalding water off the cooktop or while draining through a strainer. For home use, stockpots come in a range of sizes, usually from 8 to 20 quarts (some commercial kitchens use massive 74-quart versions). For most home kitchen tasks, we think a 12-quart stockpot is an ideal size and large enough for making big batches of stock or sauce. Going with a smaller stockpot, like one that’s eight quarts, means the pot is very similar in volume to a six- or eight-quart Dutch oven. It pays to get a stockpot that’s bigger than your other pots, yet still fits inside a base cabinet, to cover the biggest cooking tasks while avoiding pot-size overlap. For more capacity, a 16-quart stockpot is just about as big a pot as most home kitchen burners can handle.
Stockpots aren’t the best choice for sautéeing, searing, and quick-cooking grains and beans. However, they really shine when put to work making stock and broth. Their large, generous size allows for big chunks of vegetables and bones or even multiple chicken carcasses. A quality stockpot will boil water quickly and keep it rolling for as long as you need, so it’s also helpful for blanching large amounts of vegetables or sealing jars (Think: canning and preserving season).
It’s hard to replace a stockpot just because of the sheer volume most stocks need. Larger Dutch ovens can sometimes due the trick, or a big saucepan, but those pots don’t have the capacity to hold as much as a stockpot.
That depends on how much space you have in your kitchen, and how often you plan on performing tasks that require a large-format pot. If you have the room to store it, we suggest investing in a 12-quart stockpot. You may not use it every day, but when you need its large capacity, you’ll be glad to have it on hand.
While researching which models to test, we focused on stainless steel pots that are compatible with an induction burner, which provides more flexibility. We excluded stockpots made from aluminum, which reacts with acidic ingredients and can warp when used with high heat. We also ruled out pots made with enameled steel, which is used for sautéing and browning, or those with non-stick coatings that excel at cooking eggs, fish, and battered foods like pancakes. Both of these finishes can wear out over time.
A big driver of a pot’s cost is the cladding, that is, the multi-layer sandwich made up of (usually) a layer of conductive aluminum between two slabs of stainless steel, and how much of it there is in the pot— you’ll see this often marketed as tri-ply or multi-clad. Typically, the more expensive stockpots (and cookware in general) have full cladding that covers the bottom and sides of the pot, while less expensive models have cladding only on the bottom. For stockpots, in which you’re usually cooking liquids, the full cladding is less important because you don’t have much risk of food scorching on the sides when the pot is full of water (full cladding is more important for drier cooking methods like searing and sautéing). That said, a fully clad pot is always preferable, but not if the cost is unreasonable and the need isn’t as pressing.
Buying a stockpot can be a tricky purchase. Because of the pot’s size, it can be very pricey, but you really don’t need the same level of performance that you require from a skillet or sauté pan. A stockpot’s primary purpose is to simmer or boil liquids, so the cladding and even heat conduction of the more expensive options are less necessary than they would be in a pan tasked with searing and sautéing. The goal is to buy a stockpot that will last, but without spending for a build quality that you’ll rarely rely on.
What pots are best for making a roux?
Use a Heavy Bottomed Pot. I prefer cast iron or enamel coated cast iron pots or pans to make my roux. Cast iron is not only thick, but it heats evenly and you won’t get hot spots. Thinner pots, like stock pots, are almost a guarantee you will burn the roux.
The Cuisinart MultiClad Pro’s build is rock-solid, with riveted handles, a snug-fitting lid, and triple-ply stainless steel cladding (a core of aluminum sandwiched between layers of stainless steel) from the base to the top of the pot’s wall. The wide, flat handles are very comfortable and leave plenty of space for oven mitt-covered hands. The thick base layer manages heat well, which means you’re less likely to burn your food.
It didn’t take long before a pattern emerged: If a pot is uncomfortable to hold while it’s empty, things will only get worse once it’s full. We disqualified several pots for uncomfortable handles, or other basic problems with their build, such as lids that didn’t fit well. We found that handles that are spaced 3/4 to 1 inch away from the pot wall were best, providing enough room to grip the handles without feeling cramped. Some handles were disqualified because their width only left enough space for three fingers to fit, too few to lift a heavy load. We also ruled out a pair of Farberware pots because their handles are welded on, which is a cheaper build than ones attached with rivets (though, it should be noted, we experienced no issues with those welded handles).
What we liked: The fully clad Cuisinart MultiClad Pro has comfortable, sturdy handles with a spacious 1-inch-wide gap from the handle to the pot, which is enough room to fit four fingers while wearing a chunky oven mitt. The lid sits snugly and has an easy-to-grab handle. The pot bottom, at 10 1/4-inches wide, was one of the larger ones we tested, and it did the best job cooking the mirepoix without burning. Water in the Cuisinart came to a boil just as quickly as in most of the other pots.
While a pot as big as a stockpot isn’t called upon often in home kitchens, when you need to make a big batch of stock from a mess of saved bones and aromatic vegetables, there’s just no way around needing something that can handle a lot of volume. Turning to your six-quart Dutch oven, or the eight-quart pasta pot that comes with most cookware sets, can be too limiting for large batches of stock. Stockpots are also our go-to for crowd-feeding dishes like lobster boils.What we didn’t like: With cladding only on its bottom, the Cook N Home eventually burned some of the fond during our sweating and browning test. This pot is also currently sold out (the 8- and 20-quart versions are still available). For a slightly more expensive, but still under $100, 12-quart pot, the smaller version of our favorite 16-quart stockpot from Tramontina is available. Handle design was one of the first features we considered when deciding which pots to eliminate from the test field. Metal handles are typically either narrow and round, or wide and flat. We considered handle size and shape in terms of comfort and ease of holding the pot, both with bare hands and when using both oven mitts and kitchen towels. The space between the handle and the pot is also important: You want enough room to wrap your fingers around the handle while wearing oven mitts or holding a kitchen towel. Handle width plays a part too: We like to get all four fingers across the handle, though the space within the handle felt crowded on some models when we used just three fingers. For durability, we prefer handles that are riveted to the pot over those welded in place. While simmering and boiling is what a stockpot does most often, there are times you want to build flavor in the pot by sweating or even browning aromatics. To test how well the pots performed with this type of cooking, we set each on an induction burner set to medium-high heat for 3 minutes, then added olive oil and a measured amount of diced mirepoix (carrots, onions, and celery). Stirring every 90 seconds, we photographed the vegetables in three, five, nine, and 12-minute marks to confirm even cooking, fond development, and to note any burning.
What we liked: If you want a stockpot for boiling water or simmering stock, the Cook N Home is a solid choice. When filled to three-quarter capacity, it boiled water as quickly as most of the other pots, and the vented glass lid fits decently well. While the handles are round bar stock, they come coated in a grippy rubber that is comfortable and protects your hand from the hot metal—should you absentmindedly reach for it without an oven mitt or kitchen towel. There is plenty of space between the pot and the handle to grip, but testers with larger hands complained about only getting three fingers to fit instead of four.
Most of the pots achieved a boil in 49 to 50 minutes, indicating that whatever small differences there are in terms of a pot’s dimensions and build specs make little difference to its boiling performance. The only exception was All-Clad’s stockpot, which took just over one hour for the water to boil, so we disqualified it.Comfortable, sure handles on a stockpot are important, especially when a full 12-quart pot can weigh about 23 pounds—losing your grip on one when it’s full of boiling liquid is a potentially catastrophic kitchen accident. A good stockpot should have handles that are easy to grab both barehanded and while wearing chunky oven mitts (or with kitchen towels), and you should feel in control of the pot when walking around and while pouring out the contents. We lined up four testers with varying hand sizes and strengths and asked them to pick up each empty pot, with and without mitts and towels, and provide feedback on the handles. A stockpot and saucepan are not interchangeable for most tasks. Stockpots are larger (more on that in a minute), and used primarily for simmering stocks, making large batches of stew, or handling specialty tasks, like boiling lobsters. On the other hand, a saucepan is small enough for everyday cooking tasks, and is meant for tasks like cooking grains and beans, making soup, and—of course—sauce. We think most home cooks will be well served with a 12-quart stockpot, but if you know you need a bigger size—to make larger batches of stock, huge pots of soups, or lobster boils for a very large crowd—then you may want to consider owning a 16-quart pot as well. The Tramontina is our top pick for this larger size. It shares the same build quality as the 12-quart version, which we also tested. Its shortcoming are minor, and, for the price, it’s the best we found.We recently tested 12-quart stockpots from Made In, T-Fal, NutriChef, and more (models that weren’t available at the time of our original testing or didn’t make our initial lineup) at our Lab, comparing them to our current favorite 12-quart stockpot from Cuisinart. We included our findings on these models towards the bottom of this page, but did not add them as new winners.
What we didn’t like: Just like the 12-quart model, this pot is a little more prone to scorching than our top pick, so you’ll need to pay more attention if sautéing or browning foods in it.
“The trinity is based on celery, onions, and peppers, you can find this as the base of most Creole cuisine because of the savory characteristics that come along with it,” says Dickensauge. Okra acts as a thickening agent. Sauteing or adding the okra too early will break down the structure of the vegetable and it will lose its ability to thicken the gumbo to its final consistency. “You should add your okra towards the end of cooking, allowing it to steep and the okra slime to develop in the finished product,” says Dickensauge. Mix in your okra about 30 minutes before the gumbo is finished. Not getting it dark enough is a huge problem, agrees Executive Chef Joseph Rizza from Prime & Provisions in Chicago. “Make sure to toast the flour; if you don’t, don’t even bother to continue with your gumbo,” he says.Don’t walk away and let it cook without you there. “Within seconds your gumbo can be ruined, even if you are using oil. You have to continuously stir the flour mixture to get that even beautiful bark brown roux,” says Harden. This is a dish of patience, with the reward of tasty gumbo at the end.
When making the dark roux, if there is butter in the recipe substitute it with oil instead. “The reason is, once butter gets to a certain temp the fat and solids separate, this will occur before you get the roux to the color you want it, then the solids will begin to burn,” says Harden. This will leave your gumbo with a burnt bitter flavor, so instead opt for vegetable oil or even lard as the roux’s fat.
Gumbo is the ultimate thick and hearty dish to warm up with. It’s a melting pot recipe of sorts too, drawing influence from multiple cultures. The name “gumbo” is similar to a West African word for “okra,” which suggests that the original dish used okra as a natural thickener. The spice choices are Cajun-inspired, and the dish’s base is a roux, the French technique of frying flour and fat as a thickener.Another mistake made when cooking gumbo, says Rizza, is forgetting to add in the “holy trinity” at the start of the process, or even using the wrong veggies. People will often use a classic mirepoix consisting of onions, celery, and carrots, but instead, your vegetables should consist of onions, celery, and green bell peppers.
Make sure all of your ingredients are fresh. “To get an authentic flavor, try to source as many ingredients from Louisiana. There is a great andouille sausage made in New Orleans named Crescent City. It made a huge difference in the flavor of the gumbo, compared to using any smoked sausage on the shelf,” says Harden. A pot of gumbo’s quality relies on the quality of the ingredients used.
If you don’t use enough flour, the roux will be watery. “Often times people do not make the roux thick enough and it will result in a gumbo that is more like a soup than a stew,” says Dickensauge. You want to add enough flour to your fat until the roux is like a paste.What is gumbo exactly? “Cajun gumbo is generally based on a dark roux and is made with shellfish or chicken,” says Chef Cedric Harden of River Roast in Chicago. “Sausage or ham is often added to gumbos of either variety.” A third, lesser-known variety, the gumbo z’herbes, is essentially a gumbo of slow-cooked greens, he says.
Rizza says the main proteins are regularly added in the wrong order. “Ideally, add the chicken first, then the andouille, and shellfish last because it cooks the fastest,” he says. Mess it up and you may not get the texture you wanted from the meats, which could negatively impact the dish overall. “Make sure to add shellfish at the end of the cooking process, otherwise it will become rubbery if added too early,” says Ken Biffar, Corporate Chef of Siena Brands.
Cooking the gumbo for a good three to four hours on simmer is imperative. “The long cooking time adds time for flavors to develop and ensures a burst of flavor,” says Biffar. Make sure to give it time to let everything mesh together, this is not a dish to be rushed!Make sure all veggies are chopped in the same fashion for similar sizes. This will help create even cooking. “Chopping all vegetables to a dice ensures that everything will cook at the same rate, instead of getting some vegetables overcooked. This will also provide you with an evenly flavored bite,” says Biffar.
What is the secret to good gumbo?
The key to this recipe is the Roux! A “roux” is made with two ingredients; flour and oil, and it’s the key to any great gumbo recipe! The flour and oil are cooked and stirred together for about 30-45 minutes until it becomes dark brown almost like mud, or chocolate and the consistency of dough.
Constantly stir the roux until it develops a light brown, peanut butter color. Continue cooking, while stirring continuously, until it develops the color of dark coffee. This can take up to 45 minutes to an hour, but it will be worth the wait.After the base is prepared, vegetables are cooked down, and then the meat is added. “The dish simmers for a minimum of three hours, with shellfish and some spices added near the end. If desired, filé powder is added after the pot is removed from heat,” says Harden. Once finished, the gumbo is served with a big scoop of rice.Some people begin cooking gumbo with water rather than a stock, resulting in a less flavorful finished product. “Stocks to use vary based on the type of gumbo you would like to make. For instance, a chicken gumbo should use chicken stock, a pork gumbo should use a stock made from ham hocks or other hog bones, a seafood gumbo should be made from a stock made from shellfish,” says Dickensauge.
“Roux needs to be cooked low and slow to bring out the nutty flavor and rich dark color without burning it,” says Chef Dickensauge of Houndstooth Saloon in Chicago.
While it may seem fairly straightforward, there are a few mistakes you could be making when cooking gumbo, which might impact the consistency and outcome of the dish. Read more about how to thicken gumbo and how to best develop flavor. Plus here are the top things to watch out for:
All of the best stockpots are round with deep sides and a tight-fitting lid. Most of the better stockpots have straight sides, like a saucepan. This is preferable for heat conductivity, stirring, and often cleaning. Lids must be tight-fitting. The best lids will have a method of controlling steam or at the very least be designed to sit safely ajar on top of the pot. Downside? It’s extremely heavy, and it doesn’t have a protective coating. This means that you will need to properly clean, dry, and season the material after every use. But it’s a very quick process and super easy. The pros far outweigh the cons!It’s a material that takes a while to heat up but can retain that temperature for HOURS! It’s a fantastic option for making stews like Gumbo but also roasts, braised cuts, soups, and other cooking techniques, like simply cooking some rice.
What are the best pots for gumbo? Gumbo is cooked in a stockpot, the same pot used for soups and stews. There are a few important features of a quality stockpot. The size and material selected will vary based on need. All of the best gumbo pots have strong handles, a secure lid, and a thick bottom, and are highly conductive. Even the tempered glass lid can handle the heat. You can put the pot in the oven with the lid at 350°F, or you can remove the lid and turn the oven up to 500°F. Some of this has to do with heat transfer, which we’ll discuss shortly. Handles must also be securely attached for when you lift the pot when it is full. There are a few decisions with all cookware that will depend on your specific needs, preferences, and kitchen setup. Details on that later. First, we will highlight the characteristics a stockpot must have to be one of the best. It’s designed with sturdy, cool grip handles that won’t easily burn you. Their shape also makes them super easy and comfortable to use, especially considering this is a larger pot. Next, as we’ve already mentioned in the buyer’s guide, stainless steel is an extremely durable material that is also an excellent heat conductor and retainer, making your cooking process much easier. Stockpots range in size from 4–20 quarts before getting into the commercial sizes. Any bigger and you’re looking at a crawfish boiler. Depending on how much you cook, you may find it useful to have several stockpot sizes on hand.Cookware is made from many different materials, and sometimes a combination of a few. Some of the options are ceramic, cast iron, stainless steel, aluminum, and copper.
If you want a different-sized option, NutriChef has virtually all the ones you will need, from 2 quarts to 19 quarts in this specific model range. You can also use all of these on gas, electric, ceramic, and induction stovetops.
The pot is also dishwasher-safe and works on induction. The ceramic material can actually handle up to 600°F, without the lid. The lid can handle up to 425°F.
Is roux better with oil or butter?
Our recommendation: If the roux will be used in a dish that involves multiple flavors, go ahead and substitute canola oil for butter. If the roux will be used to thicken a simple sauce, it’s best to stick with butter.
This pot is dishwasher-safe and works on induction, electric, gas, and ceramic stovetops. The stainless steel material allows the pot and lid to handle up to 500°F in the oven. The stainless steel material allows you to heat the pot quickly, maintain that heat efficiently, and clean it effortlessly. It’s also dishwasher-safe and will never rust! The non-stick coating is durable as long as you take good care of it and avoid any scratching. That also means only using cooking utensils that won’t scratch the surface. Wooden or silicone spoons are great!The product also comes in a variety of colors so you can match your kitchen’s look. And the lid is completely see-through making it easy to monitor the progress of your Gumbo without losing heat.Conductivity has to do with heat transfer. This is one of those situations where you actually want the lid, handles, and side to be as hot as the bottom.
While this is a very expensive pot, it can be passed down through generations. And, because of the porcelain coating, there is little to no maintenance that needs to be done other than cleaning, drying, and properly storing the pot.
Now, the benefits of this pot. It’s made from enamel-coated cast iron. This makes it low-maintenance, easy to clean, extremely durable, and naturally (slightly) non-stick.
Can you use Aluminium cookware when making roux?
Important Roux Guidelines Do not use aluminum pots as the scraping of the metal whisk will turn light grey and impart a metallic flavor.
So, first of all, this pot is made from aluminum. While we did say “no aluminum” for slow cooking techniques, this pot is different. Why? Because it’s coated. So, it cannot react with the food during the cooking period.
It can also withstand prolonged periods of heating and won’t react with your food in any way. It’s super easy to clean and requires the bare minimum when it comes to maintenance.The price, albeit expensive, is justified. It’s another type of cooking vessel that you can pass down to your great-grandchildren if you look after it well!
Most Le Creuset cookware is made from carbon steel or cast iron that has been coated in an enamel or porcelain coating. The benefits of these pots are their durability and sleek, stylish design. What’s even better is that they come in a large variety of colors that can match your kitchen’s aesthetic!
The lid and handles are made from different materials, but you can feel just how secure they are when you hold the pot. Additionally, the rim of this pot has been tapered, making it easier to pour from without spilling.