Thursday, August 19, 2010

Okra recipes and edible memories

An okra tasting menu. I've thought it might be fun to showcase a particular ingredient in a meal with friends and okra might be a good place to try as I bet not too many are familiar enough with it. I didn't get enough in my share this week to make all three dishes but it would be fun to if you're an okra fan. If you're lucky you traded with someone or somehow have enough to try all of these. Jerry, a CSA member from Wyomissing, sends along these recipes and reminiscence of cooking with the family. Thanks for sharing, Jerry. - ddd

My Mom loved okra, and my five siblings and I did too.

My favorite way is to broil the whole pods. I roll the pods in a bit
of olive oil, season with salt & pepper and put in one layer in the
broiling pan. With broiler on high, broil the pods about four or five
inches from the flame, for six or seven minutes. Then turn pods over
and do the same to the other side. Don't over cook, a hint of
browning on each side is all you need. Spritz with lemon or lime
juice, adjust seasoning and dig in. The stem makes a great handle to
eat by hand. I also sprinkle with a fresh herb like oregano or basil
when they are on hand.

My Mom's favorite method was to dip the pods in buttermilk, shake off
the excess, roll in corn meal seasoned with salt and pepper, then fry
in a skillet with about 1/4" peanut oil on medium high heat. Don't
crowd the pods, cook till nice and brown on both sides. Yummy!! No
buttermilk on hand? Beat an egg or two, thin with plain milk, dip the
pods, shake off excess and follow the steps above.

Okra is great in stir fries, and when cooked with canned chillies and
diced tomatoes, makes a fine side dish.

My recipe:

1/2 Lb Okra, sliced into 1/2 rounds
1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes (I think Hunt's is best)
1 small onion chopped
1 small clove of garlic, minced
1/2 cup Swanson low sodium, fat free chicken broth
1 small can Ortega or Old El Paso chopped green chillies

Put all ingredients EXCEPT tomatoes in a sauce pan and cook over
medium heat until the okra is tender and no longer slippery. Add
tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Spoon into bowls and add a bit of
fresh ground black pepper and chopped cilantro. I like mine hot, so I
add chopped jalapeƱos or crushed red pepper. 4 servings.

Hope this gives you some ideas!

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