Okra is a much loved vegetable for the Indians. In 1970’s when I first arrived in the
it was just not seen anywhere, but now I note that it is not only available in the many Indian corner shops but can also be found on the vegetable shelves of our Supermarkets. It is a fine vegetable which can be cooked without much fuss and in very little time. If it comes out right I often note that it is the first dish to finish. There are a couple of caveats to the ‘without much fuss’, one being that when picking raw bhindi from the shops you need to pick the tender ones (in India my Ma would often pick one Bhindi and bend the tail end, if it snapped it is tender and worth buying otherwise she would just leave it for another day, making sure the shop keeper knows that his Bhindi is over-ripe and not worth selling). The other point is that the chopped Bhindi should be dry before cooking, otherwise it becomes stringy. UK
· One small onion sliced
· Pinch of Asafoetida (Hing)
· ¼ tsf Chilli powder
· 1 tsf Salt (to taste)
· 1 Green chilli cut length wise.
· 3 tbsf Oil
2. As soon as the hing starts to sizzle add the sliced onion and brown them till these are slightly crunchy.
3. Now add the chopped Okra and the cut green chilli, keep the heat at medium high and stir the Okra for a few minutes.
4. Add the red chilli powder and salt.
5. Cook on low heat for approximately 10-15 minutes and the Okra is ready.
This Okra dish is such a favourite in
North India that it will not only appear on the dinning table when one has invited special guests but also as everyday vegetable. I remember Ma would take it for eating on the long and hot train journeys. It goes well with parathas. These days Okra would often appear as a side dish on dinner parties. The above amount would be good enough for a party of 6-8 people if served as a side dish.