7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home

Okra is a popular vegetable used within Indian cooking but coming up with different recipes can be difficult. Here are seven dishes to try out.

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home f

it is also healthy as it is rich in folic acid and vitamin B6.

Okra is a favourite among the South Asian community and is a vegetable they tend to go to when creating a delicious dish.

However, it is a vegetable which is not popular in other regions. One of the reasons is the stickiness in okra which is caused by mucilage.

To get rid of it, wash okra properly under running water then pat dry before cutting.

When it comes to okra dishes within Indian cuisine, one of the most popular is bhindi masala. But sometimes there is a struggle to create other types of okra dishes without compromising the flavour.

These seven recipes feature okra being prepared in unique ways and accompanied by different flavour combinations.

With these recipes, you can enjoy various meals to satisfy your okra craving.

Bhindi Masala

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - masala

Bhindi masala is arguably one of the most well-known okra dishes within Indian cuisine and it is fairly simple to make.

It is essentially okra which has been fried with an array of spices and tomatoes.

Not only is this dish extremely flavourful, but it is also healthy as it is rich in folic acid and vitamin B6.

Ingredients

  • 2½ tbsp oil
  • 500g okra, washed and dried then chopped
  • 1 Red onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1-inch ginger, chopped
  • 2 Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 Green chilli, chopped
  • 1½ tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp dried mango powder
  • ¼ tsp red chilli powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp garam masala

Method

  1. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a pan then add the chopped okra. Cook for 10 minutes then reduce the heat and cook for a further five minutes, stirring often. Once done, take the pan off the heat.
  2. In another pan, add the remaining oil then add the cumin seeds. When they sizzle, add the onions and fry until soft. Add the ginger and green chilli and cook for a further minute.
  3. Add the tomatoes and cook for four minutes or until softened.
  4. Add the spices and mix well. Pour in a splash of water if the spices start to burn.
  5. Add the okra to the pan and mix well. Reduce the heat and cook uncovered for five minutes.
  6. Stir in the garam masala then serve with roti and rice.

This recipe was inspired by Cook with Manali.

Lentil & Okra Curry

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - lentils

This is a dish that must be made if you are craving a warming and hearty meal.

Tender lentils sit in a thick stew and fragrances of coriander and turmeric are given off while the poblano pepper adds a hint of heat.

The okra is added at the end to ensure it is cooked through but still has a bite.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 2 cups okra, chopped
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 3 Garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp coriander
  • ½ tsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1-inch ginger, sliced
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Poblano pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup light coconut milk
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Coriander leaves, chopped (to garnish)

Method

  1. Rinse the lentils under cold water then set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large pan, heat three tablespoons of oil over medium heat then add onion and garlic. Cook until transparent.
  3. Add the cumin, turmeric, coriander, curry powder, pepper and cook until fragrant.
  4. Stir in the puree, ginger, tomatoes and chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Add the lentils and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and partially cover. Let it simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Add the coconut milk and okra and cook for a further 10 minutes or until the okra is tender and the lentils are cooked through.
  6. Season and garnish then drizzle with the remaining oil and serve with rice or naan.

This recipe was inspired by Kitchen Confidante.

Spicy Stuffed Okra

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - stuffed

Spicy stuffed okra is a delicious appetiser to have, with a combination of spices and ground peanuts stuffed into fresh slit okra.

It is cooked until crispy and garnished with chopped coriander. This dish is ideal alongside roti or naan bread.

While it will be a mealtime favourite, it is not suitable for people with a nut allergy. For those who want to still enjoy this dish, substitute the peanuts for chickpeas.

Ingredients

  • 450g okra
  • 3 tbsp roasted peanuts, coarsely ground
  • 1 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • ½ tbsp cumin
  • A pinch of turmeric
  • ¼ cup coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp oil

Method

  1. Wash and pat dry the okra then cut the top and bottom off. Carefully make a vertical slit on each okra.
  2. To make the stuffing, mix the peanuts, red chilli powder, cumin, coriander, turmeric, coriander leaves and salt in a bowl.
  3. Gently place some of the stuffing mix into each okra making sure not to split them.
  4. When done, heat oil in a pan then add the stuffed okra. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring gently.
  5. Sprinkle any remaining stuffing over the cooked okra and cook for a further three minutes before serving.

This recipe was inspired by Ministry of Curry.

Dahi Wali Bhindi

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - dahi

This is an okra dish that is filled with aroma. The okra is gently cooked in a sauce which consists of yoghurt, coconut, cashews and beaten rice (poha).

It may be a dish that is perfect for a cold day, some people may be concerned about the calories.

Low-fat yoghurt and draining the fried okra are two simple measures to take.

It does not subdue the flavour of the dish. It is still an enjoyable okra dish.

Ingredients

  • 350g okra, chopped
  • 1 Tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp oil

For the Ground Paste

  • 2 tbsp coconut, grated
  • 2 tbsp cashew nuts
  • 2 tbsp poha (beaten rice)

For the Tempering

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp urad daal
  • 2 Dried red chillies, broken into halves
  • 5 Curry leaves
  • ¼ cup plain yoghurt
  • 1¼ cup & ½ cup water
  • 1 tsp oil
  • Salt to taste

Method

  1. In a pan, dry roast the poha until it turns slightly brown. Set aside to cool.
  2. Once cooled, grind it with the coconut and cashews, adding a small amount of water in order to make a small paste. Set aside.
  3. Clean the pan and heat the oil. Add the okra and cook until it starts to brown then reduce the heat and cook until cooked through.
  4. Transfer onto kitchen paper and pat to remove excess oil.
  5. In a pan, heat the oil for tempering then add mustard seeds. When they pop, add the cumin seeds. When they sizzle, add the urad daal, red chillies and curry leaves. Stir until the daal turns golden brown.
  6. Add the onions and fry until slightly brown. Add the tomatoes and salt. Cook until the tomatoes have softened.
  7. Mix in the chilli powder and turmeric.
  8. Add the ground paste, pouring in half a cup of water if needed. Bring to a boil.
  9. Mix in the yoghurt along with the remaining water and bring to a boil.
  10. Add the cooked okra. Once it is boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for two minutes then serve.

This recipe was inspired by Easy Bites Online.

Crispy Fried Okra

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - fried

For those who want to enjoy okra as a snack, this recipe is for you.

This recipe uses gram flour as part of a dry batter. It gives the fried okra a slightly nutty flavour.

The carom seeds add an extra level of bite and have subtle notes of anise and oregano.

Ingredients

  • 450g okra
  • ½ cup gram flour
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp carom seeds
  • 4 tsp chaat masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Lime, juiced
  • Cooking oil

Method

  1. Wash the okra and pat dry. Cut the top stem off then cut into thin slices.
  2. In a wok, heat three tablespoons of oil over medium heat.
  3. Place the okra into a mixing bowl and mix in the dry ingredients except for the salt.
  4. When the oil is hot, sprinkle the okra with salt then deep-fry them in batches. Fry until crispy then remove and drain on kitchen paper.
  5. Squeeze lime juice on the cooked okra then serve.

This recipe was inspired by The Spruce Eats.

Fish & Okra Curry

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - fish

This recipe has been simplified so that it is not time-consuming. Instead of preparing a spice blend and cooking everything separately, this is a one-pot dish.

The result is a filling meal containing tender pieces of fish, soft aubergine and crispy okra.

Salmon is ideal because it is unlikely to break during cooking and will complement the strong curry flavour. If you prefer, swap the salmon for Spanish mackerel steaks.

Ingredients

  • 1 Onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1-inch ginger, sliced lengthways
  • 3 tbsp curry powder
  • 480ml coconut milk
  • 340g mini aubergines, halved
  • 340g okra
  • 450g salmon, skin removed and cut into slices
  • 1 sprig of curry leaves
  • Salt to taste

Method

  1. In a pot, heat the oil then add the onions, ginger and garlic. Fry until softened.
  2. Add the curry powder and cook for a further two minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Pour in the coconut milk and add the curry leaves. Cover and bring to a boil. When boiling, remove the lid and season.
  4. Add the mini aubergines and okra then cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for five minutes.
  5. Add the salmon pieces. Cover and cook for a further three minutes.
  6. Remove from the heat and serve.

This recipe was inspired by Roti and Rice.

Meat & Okra Curry

7 Indian Okra Recipes to Make at Home - meat

A curried okra and meat dish is true comfort food as it is a simple tomato-based curry with wonderful flavours.

The secret is to add the okra towards the end of cooking to prevent it from breaking down while cooking.

For the meat, you can choose any red meat of your choice. Lamb or beef is perfect.

It surprisingly does not take long to cook as most of the time is needed for the meat to get tender.

Ingredients

  • 450g lamb/beef, cut into small pieces
  • 225g okra, washed and dried
  • 2 Red onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tomatoes, diced
  • 6 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 2-inch ginger, sliced
  • 1 Jalapeno pepper, chopped
  • 2-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1½ tbsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp cumin powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 3 tsp lemon juice
  • ¼ cup coriander leaves, chopped (to garnish)

Method

  1. In a pot, add the meat, onion, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, jalapeno pepper, cinnamon, coriander powder, turmeric, paprika, cumin and oil.
  2. Pour in four cups of water, stir and bring to a boil over medium heat.
  3. Once boiling, reduce the heat, cover the pot and let it cook for 35 minutes, checking frequently.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a teaspoon of oil in a frying pan. Cut off the ends of the okra then add to the pan. Fry until it starts to change colour. Once done, remove from the pan and set aside.
  5. When the meat is tender, remove the lid and increase the heat. Cook until the liquid has evaporated. Keep stirring to prevent burning.
  6. Add the cooked okra and half a cup of water to the pot. Bring it to a boil then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer covered for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from the heat and squeeze in the lemon juice. Garnish with coriander and serve.

This recipe was inspired by Simply Reem.

These seven recipes prove that okra is much more versatile than first suggested.

They are perfect as an appetiser or as a main meal. Whether it is cooked in a sauce or dry, there is a range of okra dishes to try out and these recipes are a step-by-step guide in helping you cook them.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

Images courtesy of Easy Bites Online, Kitchen Confidante, Ministry of Curry, The Spruce Eats & Simply Reem



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