January 7, 2016

Stephen Gurley Gravy in the slow cooker (red sauce with meat and egg noodles)

You may be asking yourself who the heck Stephen Gurley is.  He is one of my godfather's childhood friends. He was an only child so his mother, Gloria, let him invite friends over for dinner a lot.  One evening my Uncle Tip (the aforementioned godfather) went to dinner at his house and she made them the dish I have made over and recreated for you on this post.

Uncle Tip came home raving about the dish.  "Momma Momma, you have to call Ms. Gloria and find out how to make Stephen Gurley Gravy!" So my sweet grandma Kate called her to find out the recipe. She was amazed at how easy it was.  She made it all the time and kept it in her repertoire. When my parents were dating she made it one night and my dad loved it.  My other grandma is where we all get our cooking skills from and she is an excellent cook so this was big coming from my dad. My mom said, "you know the sauce is just ketchup and water right?"  He was shocked!  So was I later on in life when I asked my grandma how to make Stephen Gurley Gravy.  I will post both my modernized version and hers below.

I made a version of this a lot when I was going through the break up and moving.  It is comfort food at it's best.  Kate and Tip were two of my favorite people and they both loved this dish.  Both were taken way too early from us so I always think of them when I make it.  I was babysitting my nieces one night and I thought I would make Kate's namesake, Kate, some Stephen Gurley Gravy.  It was a hit!  She had three bowls (this is big for her) and said, "Aunt Missy this is so delicious!"  

I have not made Kate's original version since I was in college, but writing this post makes me want to try that now too! This is easy, tasty and great in the slow cooker and freezes beautifully.  And who doesn't love egg noodles?  It is rare that I make something without garlic, right?!  My mom says that Kate never used garlic in her cooking and wasn't introduced to it until she met her mother in law. Suffice it to say my mom came around on the garlic and she now has two older daughters that are frequently called the garlic twins!  Please enjoy the montage and the recipes are below!

 That is some garlic hiding behind the onion but I solemnly swear I did not use it 
so as to keep at least some of Kate's tradition alive.



Chop the onions kind of small to fool the kiddos.
Same for the bell pepper
Cut off the fat and cut into pieces
Get a good brown on it!
Cook these until they are nice and browned.
Just a spoonful of sugar to make up for not using ketchup.  And to balance the acid.
At the end of the cooking, it looks like most red sauces do.
Make your noodles.  I really love this egg yolk papardelle from Trader Joe's.  But regular old egg noddles are just fine for these purposes.
The first of Kate's three bowls.  She warmed up to more sauce after this.This looks like it is me eating this and not my little lady.  She's so fancy with her painted nails!
My bowl.  I don't need to warm up to sauce, I love it!
Kate's original Stephen Gurley Gravy:

Ingredients:
1 tbsp of butter
1 pack of round steak pounded with a mallet to tenderize
flour for dredging
1 bell pepper chopped
1 onion chopped
1 cup ketchup
2 cups water
salt and pepper
egg noodles for serving

Dredge the meat in flour and shake to remove excess.  Brown in a skillet with the melted butter for 2 minutes each side.  remove to a plate.  Saute the onion and bell pepper in the same pan for about 7 minutes until onions look browned.  Add the meat back in the pan, add ketchup and water and mix well. Season with salt and pepper.  Cook for 10 minutes or until meat looks tender.  Serve over egg noodles.

Missy's updated Stephen Gurley Gravy for the slow cooker:

Teaspoon of olive oil
1 lb. chuck tender steak cut into pieces
1 bell pepper chopped
1 onion chopped
2 cups tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
teaspoon of sugar
salt and pepper
egg noodles for serving

Brown your meat in the olive oil in a heated  non stick skillet about 2 minutes each side and place in your slow cooker.  Add the vegetables to the same skillet and cook 7-10 minutes until vegetables are cooked and starting to brown.  Add to your slow cooker.  Add the tomato sauce tomatoes and sugar to the slow cooker.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook on low for 8 hours.  Serve over egg noodles.

Happy Cooking!

Missy

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