Seafood Gumbo

This Seafood Gumbo is really a Winter warmer! This herby condensed soup with seafood like firm white fish and prawns is very hearty and perfect for colder weather.

It is colder in Auckland than in Wellington this year and that is not ordinary. So a perfect food to eat for dinner is something hearty and warm, just like this Seafood Gumbo. It is made with seafood like firm white fish and prawns, spicy chorizo and some herbs.

How to Make Seafood Gumbo?

To make Seafood Gumbo, saute onion, celery and capsicum in a hot oil. When the vegetables are aromatic and the onion is transparent, add the spicy chorizo (you can also use mild chorizo), one bay leaf and dried thyme. Add in the diced tomatoes and condensed tomato soup. Cover and bring it to a boil for about 20 minutes. Then add firm white fish, I used Hoki fish for this recipe, and don’t forget the prawns or shrimps. Simmer it for 7 minutes and it’s done. It’s quite simple and very filling. It will definitely brighten up your gloomy Winter day.

You may like my other seafood recipes: Crispy Fish, Takoyaki Octopus Balls, and Pesto Shrimp Pasta

Seafood Gumbo Recipe


2 tablespoons oil

1 onion, minced

2 stalks celery, minced

1 capsicum, minced (red or green)

2 spicy or mild chorizo, sliced

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon dried thyme

400 grams can diced tomatoes, Mexican-style

420 grams can condensed tomato soup

250 grams firm white fish, (hoki, lemonfish)

250 grams prawns or shrimps

1/4 cup parsley, for garnishing


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan and saute the onion, celery and capsicum. Cook over a medium heat, stirring frequently until the onion is transparent and the vegetables are aromatic, soft but not browned.
  2. Add chorizo, bay leaf and dried thyme. Continue cooking for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes and condensed tomato soup. Cover and bring to a boil for about 20 minutes.
  4. Add the prawns and fish and simmer until the seafood is cooked, about 7 minutes in gentle heat.
  5. Transfer into a bowl and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve with crusty bread.

Serve and enjoy this Seafood Gumbo with family and friends!


  • You can use either red or green capsicum for this recipe.
  • In case kids will eat with you, you can substitute spicy chorizo to a mild one.
  • For a healthier version, you can use fresh tomatoes and diced them and puree more tomatoes to substitute the condensed tomato soup. Keep in mind to add more herbs and spices when substituting as the canned tomatoes have flavors in them.
  • Only use firm white fish for this recipe, hoki is good, lemonfish is another one.
  • Serve in bowls and accompany it with crusty bread.


Did you make this recipe yet? Please leave us a comment below.


Takoyaki Octopus Balls

My husband loves Takoyaki Octopus Balls. We first had it 7 years ago in a Japanese Restaurant somewhere in Dominion Road, Auckland. I can’t remember the name of the restaurant but I’m pretty sure I archived the photo from my Instagram. Now, my eldest loves it too. Like Father like Daughter, I guess.

Anyway, this has been sitting in my head for quite some time. Why? You may ask. It’s because I was looking for bonito flakes for weeks and I have no luck.

What is Bonito Flakes?

According to Wikipedia:
Katsuobushi (Japanese: 鰹節) is dried, fermented, and smoked skipjack tuna (Katsuwonus pelamis). It is also known as bonito flakes when young bonito is used as a cheaper substitute for skipjack tuna. Katsuobushi or similarly prepared fish is also known as okaka (おかか).INGREDIENTS:

I could have just made the Takoyaki Octopus Balls by itself, but the experience wouldn’t be the same. It has to be as authentic as it should be. I found the ingredients I need in Tai Ping (Asian Store) in a Japanese/Korean Isle. I felt I won the lottery when my husband saw the bonito flakes in the very bottom of that isle. Then I grabbed the Japanese Mayo (I din’t get the Kewpie though), I went for the cheaper version and went straight home to make this for dinner.

To make Takoyaki Octopus Balls, you need the Takoyaki plate and some good skills in flipping those yummy balls until it is cooked all throughout. I promise you, you’ll get better as you go and the next thing you know, you’re a pro.

Takoyaki Sauce is not on my list so instead I made my own teriyaki sauce. I hope you can give it a go too. You’ll never want to buy teriyaki sauce from the store again if you know how to make it yourself. It’s plain and simple. Add all the following ingredients together ,1/2 cup soy sauce, 6 tablespoons mirin, 5 tablespoons water, 3 tablespoons sugar, 2 cloves garlic, minced, 2 teaspoons minced ginger,  and 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch (diluted with 1 tablespoon water). Bring to boil in a medium heat for about 2-3 minutes. Mix until it has thickened and reached the consistency you want. Bring to room temperature before using.

Now, let’s make the Takoyaki Octopus Balls.

200g flour
2 eggs
450ml water
pinch of dashi stock

100g fresh boiled octopus, chopped
1 bunch spring onion, chopped
red pickled ginger
tempura flakes

takoyaki sauce
Japanese mayonnaise
aosa powdered seaweed (or aonori)
katsuobushi bonito flakes


1. Let’s start by making the batter. In a large bowl, mix together 2 eggs, 200g of flour, 450ml of water and a little dashi stock. Set aside. You can also use the ready-made okonomiyaki flour. All you need to follow the instructions for making the batter.

2. Heat up your takoyaki plate on the gas stove on medium. If the takoyaki plate is hot, make sure to add small amount of oil in each hole and heat.

3. Now let’s deal with the octopus. Cut up the octopus into small pieces (good enough to fit in the  takoyaki sized balls).

4. Fill up half of each holes with the batter. Place one small piece of octopus in each of the semi-circular holes, and then fill up each hole to the top with the batter mix.

5. At this stage, you can add the chopped spring onions, red pickled ginger and tempura flakes to each holes. A small amount of each will give enough flavour but it will depend on your preference. It’s okay to overflow the batter out of the holes. It will be easier to flip the takoyaki octopus balls later.

6. Once the takoyaki are about half cooked, approximately 1-2 minutes, flip them over by using a wooden skewer. Poke around the side of each holes and flip them over into the hole. Take note that you can only flip each balls about three quarters around. It is better to do it this way to allow all the sides to cook evenly.

7. After a minute or two, rotate the balls in the holes again. Allow 3-4 minutes for the balls to cook or until golden brown and crispy on the outside. I know it’s not easy and it takes a bit of practice but you’ll get it done smoothly later on.

8. Lastly, place takoyaki octopus balls on a plate, pour takoyaki or teriyaki sauce and drizzle with Japanese mayonnaise. Don’t forget to sprinkle a bit of aosa powdered seaweed, spring onions and some bonito flakes on top.

9. Share Takoyaki Octopus Balls and enjoy with family and friends!

Inspired by: Japan Centre


Pesto Shrimp Pasta

What’s your dinner? Ours was Pesto Shrimp Pasta. I usually make my own Pesto but last night I used Seasons’ Gourmet Pesto. It was great to try store bought pesto once in a while. It didn’t fail me. Season’s Gourmet Pesto is really nice! Right amount of olive oil, basil and pine nuts. Yummy! We had a wonderful dinner!

Also, I’m not a professional photographer (my photos proved it haha!) but lately I’ve noticed that dark photography in food photos is trending and I want to give it a go too. I think you’ll be seeing that slight change in my Instagram feed and blog posts.


250 grams spaghetti or linguine
1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and tails removed
1 – 1 1/2 cup cup pesto sauce
½ lemon, squeezed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste
grated parmesan cheese, to taste
1/4 cup olive oil (if pesto is too thick)

1. Remove the skin and tails of the shrimp by pulling the tail off the base of the shrimp and completely peel the skin off. (You can also use frozen and peeled shrimps to skip this instruction). Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
2. Cook spaghetti according to instructions from the pack. Cook until al dente.
3. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan to medium-high heat. Saute olive oil, minced garlic, shrimp, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Cook until shrimp are no longer translucent and fully cooked through. It will take about 4-5 minutes per side. (If using the frozen and peeled shrimps, just cook through).
4. Once shrimps are fully cooked (but don’t overcook), strain off any excess juice, but make sure to leave 1-2 tablespoons of juice behind in the pan.
5. Drain spaghetti and add to the saucepan with the shrimp. Stir in 1 cup of pesto until evenly coated or more if desired. 
6. Top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
7. Serve and enjoy with family and friends!

Seafood Gumbo

This seafood gumbo is a copycat recipe from Food in a Minute. I’ve tried making this one before and to my surprise my husband and kids love it. It’s been a while so I’m making it tonight. My kids are not a fan of seafoods, they’re very selective when it comes to it. They don’t eat mussels, crabs, prawns and other shells, and it’s really hard as a Mom to think of a seafood recipe that my kids would enjoy. This recipe calls for hard white fish like hoki (hoki fish is one type of fish that we love!) so that’s great and prawns (my husband’s favorite). It’s super easy to make, I promise. It takes less than an hour to prepare and it’s so tasty and filling. I recommend to have croutons with it or toast. If you want to see how I cook this recipe… you can head on to my Instagram Story: psychedelikate. Make sure to follow me for more food recipe and family adventures. Thank you!

1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 green capsicum, deseeded and chopped
1 chorizo or spicy sausage, sliced
½ tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
420 g can Wattie’s Condensed Tomato Soup
400 g can Wattie’s Mexican Style Tomatoes
500 ml (2 cups) vegetable stock
250 g firm white fish, cut into pieces (hoki, lemonfish)
250 g raw prawn meat
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

1. Heat a dash of oil in a large saucepan and add the onion, celery and green capsicum. Cook over a moderate heat, stirring frequently until the vegetables are soft but not browned.
2. Add chorizo, thyme, bay leaf and continue cooking for a further 2 minutes.
3. Add Wattie’s Condensed Tomato Soup, Wattie’s Mexican Style Tomatoes and vegetable stock. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
4. Add the prepared seafood and continue simmering until the seafood is just cooked, about 3-6 minutes. Stir through the chopped parsley and serve in bowls, accompanied with crusty bread.
5. Serve and enjoy with family and friends!

Note: There are different types of chorizo, for a mild spicy heat use a milder sausage. For this recipe we used a very spicy chorizo which gives a smoky spicy hot note to the gumbo.


Thai Sweet Chili Prawns


500g / 18 oz shell-on prawns
About 4 small garlic cloves
2 bird eyes chilies (*optional)
2 stalks spring onions
1/4 cup Thai sweet chili sauce
3/4 tbsp soy sauce
2 drops of sesame oil


1. Mix sweet chilli sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil in a bowl. Set aside.
2. Roughly chopped garlic, slice spring onions diagonally and red chillies. Set aside.
3. Trim the prawns to your liking.
4. Heat 2 tbsps of cooking oil in a wok. When the oil is hot, on medium flame, add garlic, chillies and half of the spring onions. Saute until aromatic.
5. Add in the prawns. Let them cook on one side and when the cook side down is slightly charred and turning orange, flip the prawns to the other side.
6. When the prawns are almost cooked, add the sauce mixture and stir to combine. Do this over low heat to minimise the risk of burning the sauce.
7. Once prawns and sauce mixture is well combined, turn up the heat to medium and quickly toss the ingredient around (should last a couple of seconds). When you notice the sauce thickens and start to caramelize, switch off the flame and add in the remaining spring onions. Toss to combine everything.
8. Serve immediately with rice.

Source: Fuss Free Cooking


Alimango at Tahong (Crab and Mussels)

It’s a seafood day, hurray! We bought 4 crabs for $18.00 which is quite pricey but we were craving for it, so we don’t care if it’s a bit expensive. We also bought mussels to bake it originally, but we ended up cooking  it with the crabs. So in you go both crabs and mussels into the pot and we waited for a few minutes until the crabs turned orange/red and the mussels opened it’s shells. Those are the indications that they’re perfectly cooked already.

We had vinegar with some crushed garlic as dipping sauce for the crabs, and sweet chilli sauce for the mussels.

Believe me, it’s so yum!


Chili Mussels


2 kg. fresh mussels in shell
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh ginger
1 tbsp. black peppercorn
210 g. sweet chili stir fry sauce
1/2 cup strained cooking liquid
egg noodles or spaghetti for 4
2 tbsp. chopped coriander
1/4 cup roughly chopped roasted peanuts

1. Discard mussels that are open.
2. Scrub mussels well and remove the beard.
3. Put the wine, water, ginger and peppercorns into a large saucepan and bring to the boil
4. Add the mussels all at once, cover and cook over high heat for 4-5 minutes or until the shells open. Discard any mussels that have not opened. Strain off and reserve the 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid.
5. Put the sweet chili stir fry sauce and the strained cooking liquid into a saucepan and bring to the boil.
6. Cook the egg noodles or spaghetti according to the directions on the packet. Drain and divide among 4 bowls. Place the mussels on top of each bowl, pour over the sweet chili sauce and garnish with fresh coriander and peanuts.

* This is the original recipe. But in my case, I used cooked rice instead of egg noodles or spaghetti. It all depends on you. Unfortunately, my fresh coriander plant died so I don’t have anything to put to garnish my dish.

Share and enjoy with family and friends!!!

Prawn Salad

My hubby wanted Garlic Prawns with rice on lunch today so I thought instead of eating the same thing, I ended up thinking of my diet. So I decided to make Prawn Salad instead. It turned out so healthy and light and at the same time very delish.

1 cup of green salads (baby lettuce)
1 medium tomato
6 – 8 pcs prawns, skin peeled
2 tbsp (30ml) garlic mayonnaise

1. Just mix all the ingredients together and it’s ready to eat. 

Share it with friends and family!!!

Salmon, Corn and Dill Pasta

240 g penne pasta
1 medium brown onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cup (375 ml) skim milk
2 tbsp cornflour
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
1 x 415 g can salmon, drained and flaked
1 cup (160 g) fresh, frozen or canned corn kernels
1/4 cup (20 g) grated parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 200C or 180C fan forced.
2. Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water following the packet instructions until just tender. Drain pasta well and then return to pan.
3. Meanwhile, lightly spray a medium saucepan with oil and heat over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring for 5 minutes or until soft, then add garlic.
4. Combine cornflour with 2 tbsp of milk in a small bowl, stir until smooth. Add to pan with remaining milk.
5. Cook, stirring, until mixture boils and thickens.
6. Add pasta and dill to sauce, stirring until well combined.
7. Gently stir with salmon and corn, then spoon into a 28cm x 20cm x 5cm ovenproof dish and sprinkle with parmesan.
. Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese is  melted and golden.
9. Serve immediately.

Share it with family and friends!!!

Chili Crab

2 fresh crabs approximately 500 g each
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 cup cooking oil
1 medium finely chopped onion
5 cm fresh ginger finely grated
4 cloves finely chopped garlic
5 red chilies, finely chopped
2 cups tomato pasta sauce
1 cup water
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp sweet chili sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp soft brown sugar

1. Wash the crabs well and scrub the shell.
2. Lightly and carefully coat the shells with a little flour.
3. Heat about 2 tablespoons cooking oil in a large wok and cook 1 crab at a time, carefully turning and holding the crab in the hot oil until the shell just turns red.
4. Add the remaining oil to the wok and cook the onion, ginger, garlic and chili for 5 minutes over medium heat and stirring regularly.
5. Add the tomato sauce, water, soy sauce, chili sauce, vinegar and sugar. Bring to boil and cook for 15 minutes.
6. Return the crab to the wok and simmer, turning carefully in the sauce for 10 minutes or until the crab meat turns white.
7. Do not overcook.
8. Serve with steamed rice.

Share it with family and friends!!!
Photo: The French Cellar
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