Filé (Gumbo) Powder

Sassafras albidum
Filé was first used by the Choctaw Indians as spicy seasoning that also acted as a thickening agent. Filé is used in making some types of gumbo,a Creole and Cajun soup/stew often served over rice; other versions of gumbo use okra or roux as a thickener instead. Filé may be sprinkled sparingly over gumbo as a seasoning and a thickening agent, it adds a distinctive, earthy flavor and texture. Filé can provide thickening when okra is not in season. Sassafras Leaf Powder. Creole gumbo recipes usually call for the addition of filé powder after the gumbo is cooked and the heat has just been turned off. The filé thickens and flavors the gumbo. Do not add filé powder to the entire pot of gumbo. If gumbo is reheated with filé powder in it, the filé will become stringy and unpleasant.

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