I like to stock up on canned goods before winter which is why I ended up trying a can of Margaret Holmes Tomato, Okra and Corn. Anita and I both loved it, which set me down the path to finding something similar that I could make at home.
That brought me to this okra and tomatoes recipe, which Anita declared to be the best side dish I’ve ever made. And I have to agree, it’s the perfect side dish. It has that cooked-all-day flavor, but without the fuss. Perfect on a cool day for sure. Oh, and no, I didn’t add corn, but you could. Anita’s not the biggest fan of the corn part of the canned version, so she liked this even more!
I couldn’t find fresh okra (sadly, it can be hard to come by here in Indiana) so I used frozen, which worked out wonderfully. You can add a can of corn kernels (about a cup or so frozen) if you wish, but this dish is really great as it is.
I’m contemplating adding smoked sausage next time (update: try my smothered okra and tomatoes with shrimp and andouille!). The okra and tomatoes has that sort of gumbo feel to it, and a little smoked sausage would take it from a side dish to a main course in no time.
I like to use my good ole trusty Dutch oven to make this soup and pretty much darned near anything like it on my stovetop. It’s nice and big and sturdy. That extra weight helps it maintain and distribute heat perfectly. As an added bonus, it’s actually pretty easy to clean up too!
If you love okra as much as I do you’ll also want to make my okra giardiniera. It’s crazy good on a sandwich.
Okra and Tomatoes
- 4 slices bacon chopped
- 1 small onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 15-ounce diced tomatoes un-drained
- 1 tablespoon chicken base
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups fresh okra cut into 1-inch pieces (I used a 16 ounce package of frozen okra)
- Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and cook the bacon until tender but not crispy.
- Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onion is tender.
- Add the tomatoes and their juices along with the chicken base and sugar. Stir and season with salt and pepper.
- Reduce heat to a simmer and let simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
- Fresh okra: Add okra and cook another 20 minutes.
- Frozen okra: Add okra and cook another 10 minutes.
Nutritional values are approximate.