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Sunday, June 05, 2011

Spicy Sauteed Okra with Collard and Turnip Greens

Whole okra stuffed and pan-fried is one of my favorite ways of enjoying this unique vegetable. However, sautéed okra with spices is a wonderful side I make whenever I crave it.

Fresh okras are hard to come by here and even then it costs an arm and a leg (at least for my budget), but frozen whole okras are reasonable and cook faster as they are par-cooked before freezing.

This is a simple dish open to variations in spices and greens. I like greens a lot, be it collard or mustard, turnip or radish greens, spinach or kale, they all bring their own benefits. In this recipe I used collard and turnip greens. Serve warm with rice or Indian/Ethiopian flat breads, or enjoy as-is.

About 20 whole okras, thawed if using frozen ones
3 to 4 cups of favorite greens cut coarsely
1 medium yellow onion, diced
4 to 6 cloves of garlic, sliced
2 or 3 medium tomatoes, diced
spices (adjust to taste):
1 Tbsp coriander powder
1 Tbsp Sambal Oelek or any favorite chili paste
½ Tbsp Blue Agave Nectar or brown sugar (optional)
salt to taste
1 Tbsp vegetable oil

  1. Heat oil in a pan, add the onions, garlic and tomatoes, a pinch of salt and sauté till aromatic and onions turn translucent
  2. Add the okra and greens, spices, some water, cover and simmer till veggies are cooked to your liking. I prefer the okra not too mushy
  3. Taste and adjust flavors, garnish with cilantro if preferred

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