Spice Stuffed Okra

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Spice stuffed okra
This recipe is a little more elaborate than the simplest okra preparations. But, mark my words—the work will be worth it. This is by far one of the tastiest ways of using okra in Indian cuisine.

Ingredients

        1½ lbs (750 g) fresh, tender okra, rinsed and patted dry

        3 tablespoons oil; 1½ teaspoons cumin seeds

        1 large onion, cut in half lengthwise and thinly sliced

        1 large tomato, coarsely chopped

Masala:

        1 tablespoon ground coriander; 1 teaspoon ground cumin

        1 teaspoon mango powder; 1 teaspoon ground fennel seeds

        ½ teaspoon ground turmeric; ½ teaspoon garam masala

        ¼ teaspoon ground paprika; ¼ teaspoon Asian chili powder or ground cayenne pepper

        Salt, to taste.

Instructions

Step 1:
Make the Masala by mixing the spices and salt together in a small bowl.

Step 2:
Cut o­ff the end of the okra stem and discard. Make a long slit on one side from the stem down, stopping ¾-in (2-cm) from the tip. (This forms a stuffing pocket, but keeps the okra intact.) Stuff­ ¼ to ½ teaspoon of the spice mixture into each okra pocket. Reserve any leftover spice mixture.

Step 3:
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium-high heat in a nonstick skillet and add the cumin seeds; they should sizzle upon contact with the hot oil. Quickly add the onion and cook, stirring until golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, leaving behind any oil.

Step 4:
Lay all the stu­ed okra in the skillet in a single layer. Drizzle the remaining 1 tablespoon oil on top and cook over medium-low heat, turning the pieces very carefully, until golden brown, about 10 to 15 minutes. Scatter the cooked onions over the okra and then add any leftover spices. Mix carefully and cook over medium-low heat, turning occasionally, about 5 minutes.

Step 5:
Transfer to a serving dish. Add the tomato to the skillet and cook over high heat until wilted and coated with spices left in the skillet, about 2 minutes. Transfer to the okra platter and serve.

Food: Spice Stuffed Okra

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