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  • Writer's picturejaymorganorg

Memaw's Duck Gumbo

Lou Anne called her mother Mama, and the grandchildren called her Memaw. I called her Mrs. Hood. Maybe I changed that to Memaw like the grandchildren, but I think it’s funny that I never changed that formal call name. If Memaw was famous for any dish, it was her duck gumbo. I don’t think duck hunting was a big deal in south Mississippi when I was growing up because I never ate duck until I met the Hood family in 1993. Each year, hunting friends and family of Memaw would drop their cleaned ducks to her in preparation for her annual duck gumbo cooking. I can only remember her making it about once a year, but as you can see from the recipe, it makes a huge amount. There’s plenty to share with your friends and neighbors, but you will need your very largest soup pot.

Memaw's Duck Gumbo

(This makes a huge pot of gumbo so cut in half for a small gathering)



Breast of 12-15 Ducks

1 large bell pepper, seeded

1 large onion, cut into quarters

5 gloves of garlic

2 tablespoons Tony's Cajun seasoning

Salt and Pepper


3 cups flour

2 cups vegetable oil

2 bundles celery, chopped

2 large bell peppers, chopped

2 bundles green onions, chopped

6 cloves garlic, minced

10 to 12 cups duck broth

6 cans stewed tomatoes

2 6-ounce cans tomato paste

4 teaspoons Accent

4 tablespoons parsley

3 bay leaves

1 teaspoon oregano

1 teaspoons thyme

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon black pepper

Duck breast, cut into bite size pieces

2-3 pounds link sausage, cut into bite size pieces



To make the broth, combine all the broth ingredients in a large stock pot and cover with water. I fill my pot a little over half full to be sure all ingredients are covered. Bring to a boil and simmer about an hour. Adjust for salt and pepper. Drain the broth. Reserve broth and ducks separately. Chop the duck and set aside. Next, make your roux by combining the flour and oil in your stock pot. Cook the mixture stirring constantly until it’s about the color of chocolate milk. This takes about 30 minutes. Add celery, bell peppers, onions and garlic and continue cooking until tender, about 10-15 minutes. Slowly add in about 10 cups of broth. Next, add the remaining ingredients except the duck and sausage. Bring to a simmer for about 30 minutes before adding the duck and sausage. Cook another 30 minutes to ensure vegetables are tender. Adjust the salt and pepper. Add more broth if you prefer a thinner gumbo. Serve over rice with crunchy French bread.

FNPP Memaw's Duck Gumbo
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