Crab Gumbo

Crab Gumbo

reeling in the years

Gladys Graham self-published her cookbook, Tropical Cooking, in the Panama Canal Zone, then a U.S. possession, in 1947. It is a surprisingly comprehensive survey of cooking in the zone with 130 pages of recipes with ingredients ranging from avocado to vulture. You can read more about it here but I thought I’d share this crab gumbo recipe straight from her book.

Crab Gumbo Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon bacon drippings
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 2 cups chopped okra
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 6 cups soup stock
  • 1 pod red pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups shredded crab meat


  1. Heat bacon drippings in a saucepan. Clean green onions, reserving 1 cup of the top greens.
  2. Chop onions and saute okra in bacon drippings for 10 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Add stock, peppers, green onion tops cut in strips, thyme, bay leaf and salt. Bring to a boil and cook about 10 minutes.
  4. Add crab meat. Cover kettle with a tight fitting lid and cook slowly for 1 1/2 hours.
  5. Just before serving add filé moistened with a little soup. Serve with boiled rice.

Serves 8.

Photo by Wendy Williams from Pexels