Growing up vendakkai or okra was one of my favorite vegetables. Lot of people shy away from this vegetable because of its slimy texture, but if we cook it right we can get rid of that texture and achieve a wonderful recipe. This is the recipe that our family uses to make this curry. This recipe is without onions and it goes well with rice and sambhar or rasam. I love this curry with my curd rice too.
After leaving India, I became obsessive with this vegetable because of the scarcity of it. We do not get very good okras in the stores here. So when I do find fresh okras peeking at me in the Indian stores, I just buy a whole lot of it. Then, I clean it and chop it into desired size and freeze the excess. This continued until we started growing our own vegetables. Now we plant around 70 to 80 plants every season and grow our own okras. It is such a pleasure to be walking to our backyard and picking young tender okras. Folks who are away from India would understand my feelings.
So this is one of my okra recipes which is the South Indian way. Hoping to post few other recipes with okra soon.
Preparation time – 15 mins
Cooking time – 25 mins
Difficulty level – easy
Ingredients – (serves 4)
- Okra – 1 lb or about ½ kg
- Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder – 1tsp
- Red chili powder – 1 tsp
- Dhania/coriander powder (optional) – 1 tsp
- Asafetida – 1/4th tsp
- Salt – to taste
- Oil – 3 tbsp
- Curry leaves – few
- Wash the okras and drain them in a colander. It is important to wash the okras before we chop them. If we chop them first and then chop, the sliminess of the vegetable will increase.
- Now chop it into small circles and keep aside.
- In a non stick pan, heat the oil and once the oil heats up, add all the ingredients except the okra and salt. Let the seasoning fry for about a minute. I used about 1 tsp of chili powder, but do adjust it based on your spice level. I use the less spicy variety, so I have to use this quantity.
- Now add the okra and salt and mix it well.
- Cover the pan with an airtight lid and let it cook on medium high heat
for about 8 mins. Do open the lid once in between and give it a stir. At
no point add any water to the vegetable. The okras would cook in the
steam produced by covering the pan. Adding water will increase the
- Once the okras are cooked, leave the pan open and let it fry well. In about 10 to 15 more minutes the okra would have fried well and your curry is now ready. Do stir the curry once or twice in between cooking.
- Serve it with rice and sambhar or rasam or in my style with curd rice.
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