OKRA: Smash or pass?
Ok, yes, I know, the sliminess can be off putting for many but this recipe gets rids off the slime factor and retains all of the deliciousness. Ladies and gents I bring you my version of Indian Bhindi Masala.
Before we cook though let’s pause and appreciate this humble vegetable (technically a fruit) for all the goodness it brings to our health. Just 1 cup of okra provides 15% of our daily rec amounts of folate, vit B6, magnesium and vitamin A not to mention 25% of our vit C and K! It has cancer fighting antioxidants and polyphenols and may help in lowering cholesterol and blood sugar. It has fiber which we know rocks. I mean 💁🏽♀️ Alright let’s cook!
- 2.5 cups chopped okra (I used frozen cause that’s all I could find)
- 1 tbsp avocado oil
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/4 tsp fennel seeds
- another 1-2 tsp avocado oil
- 1 cup sliced red onion
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp minced ginger
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- a touch of red chili powder (or cayenne)
- 1 cup chopped or crushed tomatoes
- a pinch or two of salt
- toppings: ginger slivers, cilantro, cumin, coriander and cayenne and a sprinkling of amchur (dry mango powder)
Sauté okra in avocado oil on medium high heat for 8-10 minutes, sautéing often until you see the sliminess disappear. Set aside.
In the same pot, add cumin seeds and fennel seeds with more oil on a medium high flame and allow them to sizzle for a minute.
Add onion and sauté for 3-5 minutes.
Add garlic and ginger and sauté for a minute.
Add turmeric, ground cumin, ground coriander and red chili powder. Sauté for a minute.
Add tomatoes and salt. Sauté for 5 minutes.
Add back the okra and sauté for 3-5 minutes. You can also add a splash of water and cover the pot to cook the okra well. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste.
Top with ginger slivers, cilantro, cumin, coriander and cayenne and a sprinkling of amchur (dry mango powder) if you have some.
Enjoy with lentils and roti, rice or quinoa.