Okra is one of those vegetables that you either love or hate. Growing up in Ohio I did not really know a lot about okra. I think my Grandma Bonnie might have grown it in her garden but I don’t remember it being a staple in our household.
One of our neighbors here has a garden and is very generous with his produce. So far this summer he has shared collard greens, tomatoes and now okra. I was thrilled to get the latest bag of okra and tomatoes and found probably one of the easiest ways to cook it.
Many times okra is battered and deep fried which is delicious but not that healthy so I was looking for a healthier option. I tend to roast most of my vegetables these days so I thought I would try that with the okra and it was a winner.
If you have never had okra the taste is a little difficult to describe. I honestly do not think it has a lot of flavor — more like eggplant maybe– and picks up the flavors of what it it cooked with . It tends to be a little slimy but you may recognize the “lady finger” shape of the seed pods that is an ingredient in gumbo. The slimy texture is a turn off for a lot of people but when I roasted it it was not nearly as slimy as when I have prepared it other ways.
Roasted Okra and Tomatoes
18 -20 fresh okra pods (slicked into 1/3 inch pieces)
1 small firm tomato (chopped into small pieces)
1/4 cup chopped red onion (optional)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Combine chopped okra, tomato and optional onion in ziplock bag and add olive oil. Shake until well coated. Add salt and pepper to taste and shake.
Spread vegetables on baking sheet and bake in 425 degree oven for 12- 15 minutes until roasted. Serve immediately.
That’s it – just about as simple as you can get. Let me know if you have tried okra and if so how you fix it. I am always looking for new ways to cook it and I keeping my fingers crossed that my neighbor leaves a little bag of okra on my front porch soon.