Ground Sassafras Leaf
Choose 1 or 6 jars, 12 oz. each
A key component in Cajun & Creole cooking, ground sassafras leaf (also known as filé powder or gumbo filé, though that sometimes includes some ground thyme) is used both as an herb and a thickener. Its flavor is herbaceous, earthy, spicy, and a little sweet.
The use of the dried & ground leaves of the North American sassafras (sassafras albidum) in food goes back hundreds of years. Its use in the Cajun & Creole recipes it is associated with today probably was picked up from Native American cultures (most notably the Choctaw) who were using it prior to European colonization.
The most well-known sassafras/file powder dishes are gumbo & jambalaya.
Store ground sassafras leaf in an airtight container in a cool, dark, dry place.
RECIPES & TIPS
Ground sassafras can be used as a thickener or seasoning. Its flavor is potent, so a little goes a long way when using it. To thicken with sassafras, add it to liquids (soups or stews) before simmering/boiling them.