Don't let today be just another dreary start to the week; add some excitement to your evening by making a festive meal this meatless Monday that shows your Mardi Gras spirit but also gets you out of the kitchen in under 45 minutes.
Classic gumbo is heavy on the meat and calls for a generous amount of time — something that's unheard of on a weekday evening. However, you can simplify what goes into your pot without sacrificing too much flavor.
The key is to start with a roux, add in that holy trinity of green bells, celery, and onions for characteristic New Orleans flavor, and season generously with hot paprika and Tabasco (or Crystal, if you favor it) for a smoky, spicy finish. Ready to hop on board? The gumbo train takes off right here.