Celiac Disease / Recipes / Uncategorized

Gluten-Free Gumbo, Hurricanes, & King Cake (Ummm, maybe?)

gluten-free gumboGet ready for Mardi Gras, people! Or if you’re already deep in it, get ready for Mardi Gras to be over in 48 hours you crazy, incredibly intoxicated people. I’m in Los Angeles where it’s not really a thing, so I made it a thing in my own house. Mostly. And if you’re skipping the whole thing and moving straight into Valentine’s Day, check out my live show tonight on GFree and Happy where I mix up gluten-free Valentine’s Day apps, dessert, and a perfect gin martini. Which I drink, and then try to use a knife! Fun. Tune in at 7 p.m. Pacific Coast time, you romantics.

So about the King Cake. You’ll notice it’s photographed in the background. Because it looks like it’s gluten-free. Now I never had a King Cake before the celiac, so I don’t actually know what one tastes like. I don’t think, however, it tastes like lemon-y bread with icing on top. Still, look how nicely we made the sugar crystals with food coloring! gluten-free king cakeAnd that was the best part of the gluten-free King Cake. That, and when my 3-year-old found the baby and made up the rule, “No one goes outside by themselves after dark.” I’ll admit I was in a rush to do this King Cake, and didn’t realize people also make King Cakes with cinnamon, with a cream cheese center, and with a brioche-like texture. I made the mistake of grabbing Emeril’s recipe because the man is Cajun, and therefore felt totally okay relying on his very boring recipe that was very suck-y when you made it gluten-free. Since I’m also of Cajun descent, yet have never even eaten King Cake, I can’t figure out how disappointed I should be in Emeril. On a scale of “Bam!” I’m putting my disappointment at a “bam.” There’s always next year.

What was delicious was the gluten-free gumbo. I bought some andouille sausage that was marked gluten-free, and used gluten-free flour for the roux, checked my beef bouillon and Worcestershire sauce for the gf, and we were in bizness.

So can we talk about gluten-free Hurricanes? Or rather, “Hurricanes”? As someone who has gotten silly on Hurricanes at Pat O’Brien’s, when I followed the recipes I found online I was really surprised to get a brown mess of a drink. Sure it was still fruity and stronger than a mom of two should consume, but it looked nothing at all like the Hurricanes I’ve had in New Orleans. So I made one batch with only light rum, instead of the mixing dark and light like all the recipes instructed. Still, I will leave you with an authentic (?) recipe that includes dark rum. Just remember, if you only use light you will enjoy the ruby color in the photo above. Either one will get you completely knackered in a matter of minutes, however. Laissez les bons temps rouler, mother fuckers.

Gluten-Free Gumbo

adapted from Food Network

Prep time: 30 minutes Cook time: 2 1/2 hours


3 large boneless skinless chicken breast halves
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 pound gluten-free smoked sausage, or andouille, sliced
1/2 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 bulb fennel, chopped
1/4 cup gluten-free Worcestershire sauce
1/4 bunch flat leaf parsley, stems and leaves, coarsely shopped
4 cups hot water
5 gluten-free beef bouillon cubes
1 (14-ounce can) stewed tomatoes with juice
1/2 pound shrimp, deveined and peeled

1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken until browned on both sides and remove. Add the sausage and cook until browned, then remove. Sprinkle the gluten-free flour over the oil, add 2 tablespoons of butter and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until brown, about 10 minutes. Let the roux cool.

2. Return the Dutch oven to low heat and melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter. Add the onion, garlic, green pepper and fennel and cook for 10 minutes. Add Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, to taste and the 1/4 bunch parsley. Cook, while stirring frequently, for 10 minutes.

3. Add 4 cups hot water and gluten-free bouillon cubes, whisking constantly. Add the chicken and sausage. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes. Add tomatoes and cover and simmer for 1 hour.

4. Just before serving add the green onions, shrimp and chopped parsley. Serve over rice and sprinkle with Tabasco if you swing that way. Which you should.

Gluten-Free Hurricanes

Fine, they’re naturally gluten-free. Anyhoo.

Prep time: 7 minutes


1.5 ounces Amaretto
1 ounce dark rum
1 ounce light rum
6 ounces orange juice
6 ounces pineapple juice
1 teaspoon grenadine
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Orange for garnish
Lemon for garnish

1. Using one super large ice cube, or 4 smaller, fill a tall glass with ice. Pour in Amaretto, dark and light rums, and juices, grenadine and mix with a stirrer. Garnish with orange and lemon slice.

Makes: 1 big drink

We’re not even going to talk about the gluten-free King Cake, ‘kay?

11 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Gumbo, Hurricanes, & King Cake (Ummm, maybe?)

  1. I’m currently making a king cake with Cup 4 Cup using Emeril’s recipe (always my standby before having to go GF). It pretty much does taste like a lemony yeast cake with lemon glaze (and of course sugar) on top. If you live down here you are required to love it whether you like it or not! This is my second GF attempt (first with brown rice flour failed big time). Always, always, always fill with sweetened cream cheese otherwise its not worth eating.

  2. GF king cakes are super hard. I tried one last year (also with brown rice flour, like meghan) – and it just didn’t happen. C’est la vie. Pre-gf, the ones I had were like braided brioche with icing and sprinkles – definitely never lemon, and no cream cheese either. But that could just mean that San Diego has no idea how to do Louisiana food.

    I do red beans and rice for mardi gras with cornbread and sometimes gf fried okra. So yummy. And sometimes, if I don’t have cornbread mix around, I get the El Torito sweet corn cake mix, and make that – it’s like 2 dollars, and delicious.

  3. Ok y’all…the King Cake with Cup 4 Cup using a doctored up version of Emeril’s recipe was AMAZEBALLS!! Added lots of extra lemon zest and freshly grated nutmeg to the dough; sprinkled a ton of cinnamon and sugar on the spread out dough, then a very thick layer of confectioners sugar sweetened cream cheese before rolling it up. I also use more lemon juice in the glaze because I like it tart. Holy crap was it good and so easy to make. The Cup 4 Cup dough handled like a dream. So much easier than wheat flour dough and took no time at all to rise.

  4. Forgot to add: I was out of butter so I used safflower oil in the dough instead. So much yummier! The dough wasn’t dry at all (like King Cake tends to be) but was so nice and moist.

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