what is file? its something in gumbo, but i dont know what it is?
- Anonymous1 decade agoFavorite Answer
Gumbo file (with an accent, pronounced "fee-lay") is dried and ground sassafrass leaves. It is used in cajun cooking, most noteably gumbo (hence often being labeled "gumbo file").
It should be noted that okra may also be used in gumbo as a thickening agent. And the difference between the two is taken quite seriously by locals - whatever your grandmother did, which is what HER grandmother did, is the ONLY way it should be made. Okra or file... I wouldn't be surprised if small wars were started over that issue, from those I've known from the cajun areas.
- wineduchessLv 61 decade ago
Gumbo file powder is a necessity for cooking authentic Cajun cuisine. Quite simply, gumbo file powder is the powdered leaves of the sassafras tree. When ground, they smell somewhat like eucalyptus or juicy fruit gum.
Long before the use of file powder for Creole and Cajun cooking, American Indians pounded sassafras leaves into a powder and added them to soups and stews. In addition to contributing an unusual flavor, the powder also acts as a thickener when added to liquid.
- 1 decade ago
Ground sassafrass leaves and it is used in Gumbo as a thickening agent when you choose not to use okra.
- 1 decade ago
It's a spice made from dried and ground Sassafras leaves. Used as a thickening agent in Creole cooking.
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- freshblissLv 61 decade ago
its a seasoning made mostly from dried okra, along with sassafras and a few other things.
Usually in the spice aisle.
Simply organic and mccormick both make it.
Of course, you dont have to add it if you cant find it.