“So few people eat okra (more radishes are grown in this country) that it never even makes it onto the lists of top 10 hated foods”. – Julia Reed
I love okra and this Punjabi Bhindi Masala recipe or okra curry is a passionate effort to defend the reputation of a delightful tasting, low calorie vegetable that can be cooked in many ways as a vegetarian main course or interesting side to a meat dish.
The multiple health benefits include high dietary fibre, zero cholesterol, vitamins rich and strong antioxidant. Usually people avoid it because of the slime that comes out of it, if properly prepared and cooked that can be totally avoided.
-Always wash and pat dry okra before you cut it.
-Stir frying okra helps dry up the slime.
-Avoid adding water or other liquids to okra while cooking if you don’t want it to become gooey.
This simple curry is more of a stir fry and gets done in one pan. Serve with plain flatbread and chutney for a simple, healthy and delicious weekday meal.
1/2 kg okra
2 medium onions, finely chopped
3 medium tomatoes, diced
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin seeds
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons julienne cut ginger
2 green chilli peppers, chopped
3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon and dry mint leaves
This Is What You Do :
Wash and drain okra, pat dry on kitchen towel.
Remove the ends and cut into bite size pieces (almost 1/2 inch).
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a frying pan on medium-low heat. Add okra pieces and fry till they are tender from inside and slightly crispy on the outside.
Scoop them out of the pan, set aside. Add remaining oil to the same pan, add onions. Fry till they are golden ( not brown), add tomatoes, garlic, ginger, salt, cayenne pepper, turmeric and cumin.
Add a splash of water, cover the pan, let simmer for 5-6 minutes or till the tomatoes are tender and liquids reduced. Remove cover, stir in the fried okra and green chilli peppers.
Squeeze juice of 1 lemon and sprinkle dry, crushed mint leaves over it. Serve hot with roti (Indian flat bread) , fill in pita pockets or roll into a tortilla. Enjoy !
for best results buy fresh, green and tender okra, mature okra get fibrous with hard seeds and don’t taste good.