Fried Okra just screams Summer time. It’s savory and crunchy, and has a flavor all it’s own. When fried, it pairs wonderfully with tomatoes, and just about anything else you can dream up. You can serve it as an appetizer, or a side dish. It’s easy to make, and you can have it done and warming in the oven for guests to arrive, or pile it high on a platter and watch it disappear. You’re gonna’ love this one!
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Wash the okra in cool water in a colander, and trim off both ends. Cut the Okra in half inch to one inch pieces, and place in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the salt, and toss with hands. In another bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal and baking powder, until blended. Sprinkle the Okra with the flour/cornmeal mixture, and toss until well coated. (Okra should be completely coated, if it isn’t, add a little more flour and cornmeal). Place the Okra on a parchment lined cookie sheet in a single layer. Place the cookie sheet in the freezer for about 1 hour.
Okra is fried in batches, and not all at once. Follow the steps, and you’ll have delicious fried Okra. In a large fryer, or a large roaster, fill the fryer to the suggested line, or, fill the roaster about 1/2 way full with cooking oil. Heat oil, until hot. Remove the Okra from the freezer, and place one piece of Okra in a frying tool, or a large slotted spoon, and lower it into the hot oil. When the Okra floats, and sizzles in the hot oil, the oil is ready to fry the Okra. Lower the Okra into the hot oil with a frying tool, or a large slotted spoon, a few pieces at a time, until you have the fryer or roaster not quite full – you want the Okra to have enough room to fry without being crowded in the fryer. Don’t overload your fryer, or roaster. You’ll have to adjust the heat when frying. You may want to turn the heat down just a little when the Okra is almost done, and as your removing it. Then, put one piece in the oil again and turn your heat up, and when the piece of Okra floats, add more Okra to fry, until you’ve fried all the Okra. Fry the Okra until it’s golden brown, and remove to paper towels to drain. (Frying times will vary depending on what you’re frying the Okra in, (Fryer – Roaster, etc) so just watch the color of the Okra, and when it is a golden color, remove from the hot oil). Cool a little on paper towels, and serve. Enjoy!
NOTE: A frying tool, or large slotted spoon, is a tool or spoon with a long handle to keep you from getting your hands or fingers close to the hot oil. DO NOT use a regular spoon, the handle is not long enough, and oil may splatter and burn you as your placing the Okra into the oil. If you have not fried Okra before or are not experienced working with hot oil, use a pot holder when placing or removing the Okra from the oil to avoid burns.
ALSO: If you’ve never worked with Okra before, when you cut into it, it’s slimy…there’s no elegant way to say it, but, when you coat it, it’s no longer slimy, and fry’s up beautifully. AND, it’s really good for you, it’s a very healthy vegetable, full of vitamins and minerals, and antioxidants. It helps with digestion, and is good for Asthma sufferers, as it’s full of vitamin C. Do a little research and you’ll find lot’s of studies that tout the benefits of this Southern delicacy! Serves 4 – 8.
- 2 - 3 pounds of fresh Okra
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup of cornmeal
- 1 Tablespoon of baking powder
- Wash the okra in cool water in a colander, and trim off both ends.
- Cut the Okra in half inch to one inch pieces, and place in a large bowl.
- Sprinkle with the salt, and toss with hands.
- In another bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal and baking powder, until blended. Sprinkle the Okra with the flour/cornmeal mixture, and toss until well coated. (Okra should be completely coated, if it isn't, add a little more flour and cornmeal).
- Place the Okra on a parchment lined cookie sheet in a single layer.
- Place the cookie sheet in the freezer for about 1 hour.
These are a few items I find helpful in my own kitchen when preparing this Fried Okra Recipe:
KUKPO Mixing Bowls – 3 piece set Includes 1.8 Qt, 3.6 Qt, 6.5 Qt, Easy Grip Handle With Non – Skid BottomSilicone Spatula, Stainless Steel Core Heat Resistant Non stick Rubber Spatulas, Set of 4Bellemain Micro-perforated Stainless Steel 5-quart Colander-Dishwasher SafeRachael Ray 56524 3-Piece Oven Lovin’ Cookie Pan Steel Baking Sheet Set, Gray with Orange GripsDOWAN 9.7-Inch Porcelain Serving Platters/Plates – Set of 4, WhiteNinja Air Fryer, 1550-Watt Programmable Base for Air Frying, Roasting, Reheating & Dehydrating with 4-Quart Ceramic Coated Basket (AF101), Black/GrayPresto 05420 FryDaddy Electric Deep FryerReynolds Kitchens Non-Stick Parchment Paper – 60 Square’The Whole Okra: A Seed to Stem CelebrationOkra: a Savor the South® cookbook (Savor the South Cookbooks)Okra Eaters