Tomato Gravy Catfish – With Bacon! My “52 In 22” Cooking Challenge Has A Feast From “Mr. Joe”!

A Delicious “Tomato Gravy Catfish With Bacon!”

Who’s hungry? If not, you will be after I share my latest “52 In 22” cooking challenge – thanks to a brilliant Chef from my home town of Seattle and a guy named “Mr. Joe”!

And who is “Mr. Joe?” Well, Chef Tom explains in his cookbook;

“Mr. Joe was our next-door neighbor for 18 years in Newark Delaware, where I grew up. No calling adults by their first names in those days – it was MR> Joe and MRS. Alice.”

You see, every week Mr. Joe would make this dish and Chef Douglas loved it!

Douglas never forgot that recipe, and when he asked his parent for it they admitted they had no idea – it was something Mr. Joe came up with – so the parents got Mr. Joe to write it down for Chef Tom and he has it in his cookbook as an homage!

This is a delicious and for me unusual way to serve fish – but sine I love the sweetness of that fish, let’s make it in honor of Mr. Joe!

For The Tomato Gravy:

8 slices bacon

2/3 cup chopped onion

-1/2 cups canned diced tomato

1 cup canned tomato sauce

Chef Tom notes that while he always uses fresh tomatoes at his restaurant, Mr. Joe did NOT – so he is honoring the original recipe by using canned!

Tabasco sauce to taste

2 tsp sugar

1 tsp cornstarch

salt and pepper to taste

The first thing to do is to fry the bacon until crispy then set aside for later…and as an added treat, a little video of it bubbling away on the stove…here’s a little “bacon frying music” for you…

Now, cook the onions in 2 tbl of the bacon grease for about two minutes then add the tomatoes.

Cook for ten minutes, then puree in a food processor….I did it briefly to keep a chunkier consistency which I like…

Return the gravy to the pan and add your tabasco and all seasonings. Simmer for five minutes, then add the corn starch and it will make the “gravy”…

Now that your gravy is done, time to fry some food – but let’s not forget to make Tom’s special spice rub first!

For The Spice Rub:

Both the catfish and the artichokes can use the same spicy mixture.

2 tbl. paprika

2 tsp salt

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp black pepper

1/2 tsp cayenne

I dredged my artichokes first – I used cooked the quarter chunks and they worked just fine…

They took less than ten minutes and then I set them aside with the bacon and the last part of the process was frying up the catfish!

1-1/2 pound catfish fillets, cut into portions

3 tbl peanut oil for pan frying the fish

4 lemon wedges

Oh, and they want you to use fresh parsley so here I am with mine:

Frying fish doesn’t take long at all.

Heat your peanut oil in a frying pan and fry your catfish, about 4 minutes per side.

While they are cooking, reheat your bacon briefly in the oven so it’s nice and warm – you can put your artichokes in as well…then it’s time to plate the dish!

Here’s the process:

As you saw in the video, you ladle the gravy onto a plate, put a catfish portion over the sauce and lay two strips of bacon over the top!

Garnish your plate with parsley, lemon wedges and the fried artichokes and your “tomato gravy catfish” is ready to enjoy!

What a delicious bite of food!

Bravo to Chef Tom Douglas – he has a great line of canned spice rubs for salmon, steak, chicken and vegetables too…they are terrific!

I love using regular products in new ways…

Yes, this was a single strip of beef I needed for another of these “52 In 22” cooking challenge – I love cooking unique recipes like this one…

It was “gingered beef with asparagus and leek” and it was incredible thanks to Chef Ming Tsai’s recipe!

You can see how easy and delicious it is by clicking on my story here:

I love asian flavors, and that includes this unique “pub food” from Tokyo:

Some was simple, some was wild and you can see it all by clicking on my story here:

This was week #43 of my “52 In 22” challenge, which has travelled the world and crossed oceans of time as well:

This classic Sole dish with Lobster Sauce was from the 60’s, but legendary horror Actor Vincent Price captured the recipe for all time!

Click here to see how:

That was week one – in the time that followed, I’ve cooked Vegan, Italian, French, and Meatball too:

This was the juiciest, most flavorful Meatball of my life – click here for the recipe and the secret ingredient:

I also had a blast making a pie – but it isn’t just ANY pie:

This one has Duck, Pancetta, Cabbage and Mustard!

Click here to see how I made it from scratch!

I have also cooked a traditional Italian “Sunday Gravy”, with an interesting assist from Actor / Cookbook Author / Food Travel Host Stanley Tucci:

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is making-sunday-gravy-in-two-courses.jpeg

I learned a fascinating bit of information about how you are supposed to serve this dish, and you can see how I did by clicking on my story here:

As my “52 Cookbooks 52 Recipes” challenge continues, I am sharing and storing all of these recipes on my food website “Bite! Eat! Repeat!” – it’s your site for all things food – if you like what you see, please click on my link and follow this blog as well!

Let me know what you think of my “52 In 22” challenge!

If you like the story, share it with friends on social media! Thanks!

Categories: 52 In 22!, Bacon, Bite Eat Swallow, Bite! Eat! Repeat!, Chef memoirs, Cookbooks, Eat This!, Fine Dining, Food, Food Pictures, Food Porn, Food Writing, Recipes, Restaurants, Wacky Food, World's Wildest Food

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5 replies

  1. HI John, you do find excellent fish recipes. I’m not sure if I’ve see catfish here. I might have to find a substitute.


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