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1 c. regular long grain rice
1 lb. hot italian sausage links
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2 med. onion (diced)
1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chicken broth
1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen whole okra
2 tsp. hot pepper sauce
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 lb. large shrimp, shelled and deveined

In 2 quart saucepan, prepare rice as labeled. Keep warm.

Meanwhile, heat 5 quart Dutch oven or saucepot over medium high heat until hot. Add sausage and cook until very brown, about 10 minutes, turning often. Transfer sausages to plate to cool slightly. Slice each sausage into thirds.

Discard all but 1 Tbsp. drippings from Dutch oven. Add vegetable oil and heat over medium heat until hot. Stir in flour until blended and cook, stirring frequently, until flour is dark brown, but not burned. Add celery, green pepper, and onion and cook 8 to 10 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally.

Return sausage to Dutch oven. Gradually stir in chicken broth, okra, hot pepper sauce, thyme, oregano, bay leaf, and 1/2 c. water. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add shrimp and cook uncovered, until shrimp turn opaque throughout, about 2 minutes. Discard bay leaf.

Serve gumbo in bowls with a scoop of hot rice in center of each bowl.

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