Flavors meld in gumbo from The Optimist

From the menu … The Optimist, 914 Howell Mill Road, Atlanta; 404-477-6260;

Three of us had the gumbo at The Optimist. We all thought it was some of the best that we have ever had. Our wonderful waiter asked the chef for the recipe that same night but the chef was obviously busy. Our waiter promised to email the recipe to me. It never came so I am hoping that maybe you can get it for me. Thanks so much. — Mary Beth Corgan, Marietta

This gumbo recipe is the creation of Ford Fry and the restaurant was happy to share. We’ve cut it down from the big batch made in the restaurant kitchen. When you’re dining at The Optimist, they’ll serve this to you in half cup portions. The gumbo is prepared ahead of time which gives the flavors a chance to really develop. And for a recipe that takes hours to cook, that’s the only way to get it done. Then when you place your order, they bring your portion to a boil and add a shrimp at that time. The shrimp cooks through and the gumbo is served. Done!

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