1. In large Dutch oven, melt shortening over low heat; add flour and cook, stirring, until brown, about 10 minutes (do not hurry; if flour burns, roux is ruined).
2. Add onions and bell pepper; cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
3. Slowly add warm broth; stir until broth reaches a boil.
4. Add tomatoes, okra, rice, celery, salt, pepper, thyme and bay leaf; bring to a boil.
5. Add chicken; when mixture boils again, reduce heat to low, cover and cook about 20 minutes.
6. Stir and cook, covered, 20 minutes longer.
Your Classic Chicken Gumbo From Tony Burke is ready. Bon appetit!
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