For authentic gumbo, add filé, a Creole herb found in better markets.
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt plus more
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs
- 1/2 cup (or more) vegetable oil
- 1 pound andouille or other spicy smoked sausage, cut into 1/2' rounds
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced (white and pale parts separated from dark)
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 2 green bell peppers, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
- 8 cups low-salt chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- 2 cups 1/2”-thick slices fresh (or frozen, thawed) okra, divided
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Worchestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce (preferably Crystal)
- 1 teaspoon filé powder plus more (optional)
Combine 1 Tbsp. salt and next 3 ingredients in a small bowl; sprinkle all over chicken. Heat 1/2 cup oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Working in batches, sear chicken until golden brown, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Add sausage to pot; cook until browned, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer to plate with chicken.
Strain drippings from pot through a fine-mesh sieve into a 2-cup heatproof measuring cup; reserve 1 cup drippings, adding more oil if needed to measure 1 cup. Wipe pot clean; return drippings to pot.
Heat drippings over medium heat. Whisk in flour. Whisk constantly until roux is the color of milk chocolate, 15–20 minutes. Reduce heat to low; add onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in white and pale-green parts of scallions and next 3 ingredients. Cook, stirring often, until soft, about 10 minutes.
Slowly whisk in broth. Add bay leaves, thyme, and reserved chicken and sausage. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer gently, skimming fat from surface and stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes.
Stir in 1 cup okra, Worcestershire, and hot sauce. Simmer until chicken is very tender and flavors meld, about 45 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 cup okra; simmer until okra is crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Season to taste with salt. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 days ahead. Let cool slightly; chill uncovered until cold. Cover and keep chilled. Rewarm gently before continuing. Add 1 tsp. filé powder, if using.
Serve gumbo over rice. Garnish with dark-green parts of scallions. Sprinkle with more filé powder, if desired.