I had never had this dish before. I met a friend at a new restaurant in downtown Memphis called Cockadoo’s on Second. It seemed kind of different, kind of weird. But it sounded good, so I went for it. The dish was Tomato Gravy, and tonight, more than a year later, I tried to recreate it. Also, I had a ton of farmer’s market veggies to use up. I guess I did this a little backwards. After I made it, I looked up “real” recipes. I’m glad I followed my taste buds on this one because it came out just like I wanted it to. It make not be a “typical” tomato gravy recipe, but I loved it!
Chop/slice the following:
3-4 small zucchini
3-4 small yellow squash
1 large onion
1-2 cups okra (fresh or frozen)
In a very large skillet, saute the zucchini, squash, and onion in about 2 T of olive oil on medium-high heat, stirring often. When those are soft and brown, add a 28 oz. can of tomato puree (crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce would be fine, too) and 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes. Then, stir in the okra. Season with 2 T butter, 2 t salt, 1t black pepper, 2-3 finely chopped cloves of garlic, and a mixture of herbs*. I also added 3 cubes of my carrot puree (optional).
Turn down to med-low and stir every 10 minutes or so for 30 minutes total or until veggies are tender. Taste for seasonings before plating. Serve over fluffy rice.
Carrots and bell peppers would also be a yummy addition. If you like spicy flavors, a little crushed red pepper would work nicely in the sauce as well!
*For the herbs, use a tablespoon and a half of dried herbs, either a combo of basil, parsley, rosemary, etc. or a handful of mixed fresh herbs. I used fresh sage, thyme, rosemary, oregano, and basil.