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Southern Tomato Gravy
4 tablespoons fat (butter, bacon drippings, or sausage fat work best)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup chicken stock or broth, plus more as needed
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes OR 2 large tomatoes, peeled, cored, and chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
If using fresh tomatoes, start by placing chopped tomatoes in a saucepan with the chicken stock and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until tomatoes have broken down. If using canned tomatoes, skip this and start with the next step (the roux).
In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter or bacon grease. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring constantly, until bubbly and slightly brown, 3-4 minutes. (It should smell nutty, but don’t let it burn.)
Slowly whisk in chicken broth and stir until smooth, followed by the can of undrained tomatoes. (If using fresh tomatoes, add the cooked down tomatoes here, followed by a little more stock or water if too thick.)
Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently, until gravy has thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve over buttermilk biscuits, grits, or scrambled eggs. Enjoy!