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th8BF3NOE5These tender little guys are just screaming for a spot on your dinner plate! Today I’ll show you TWO ways to prepare them.

#1.  BOILED OKRA

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Boiled baby okra with onion and fresh tomato!

WHAT YOU NEED:

fat to sauté onion (I used bacon)

onion

fresh tomato

okra

salt & pepper

Sauté  chopped onion in the bacon fat. I used about 2 tsp. of fat and half of a red onion.

When onion is translucent, add chopped tomatoes and stir. Season with salt and pepper.

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Add okra. My CSA portion was right at a pound. I did cut off some of the upper stem. Stir to coat okra with other ingredients and then add ½-1 cup of water. Bring to boil, cover, and simmer about 6 minutes. Check for tenderness. Mine were done in about 7 minutes.

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That’s it! Easy and delicious! This is how I prepare baby okra, but if I have larger pods that I slice, I use this recipe for Stewed Okra and Tomatoes. I use chicken broth in place of the chicken bouillon. I found the recipe to need more liquid, and the broth takes care of that.  

# 2.  FRIED OKRA

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Super crunchy fried okra “fingers!”

Hubby loves fried okra, but he doesn’t get it very often, for a couple of reasons: health (Hello!) and because I hate the smell of fried food in the house. I control these two reasons by limiting his intake of these deliciously crunchy wonders and by frying them outside on the patio.

I had two FRIED OKRA break-throughs last summer:  I found the absolute BEST recipe for fried okra – a Southern Living method that produces crunchy breading that stays ON the okra! The secret is cornstarch and a tiny bit of sugar. And, I read on a blog about okra “fingers.” I hate chasing little pieces of okra around a frying pan. This blogger sliced the pods length-ways and fried them up like that. Eureka! Okra fingers!

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Slice okra length-ways to create okra “fingers.”

WHAT YOU NEED:

1 lb. fresh okra

¾ cup buttermilk*

1 ½ cups self-rising white cornmeal mix *

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. sugar

Vegetable oil

*MAKE YOUR OWN self-rising cornmeal mix:

       1 ½ cups cornmeal

       2 Tbl. baking powder

       1 tsp. salt

       1/3 cup + 1 Tbl. cornstarch

*MAKE YOUR OWN BUTTERMILK: to one cup of warmed milk add ONE of the following, stir, and let stand 5-10 minutes:

1 Tbl. lemon juice

1 Tbl. vinegar

1 ¾ Tbl. cream of tartar

WHAT YOU DO:

Slice okra length-ways and add to buttermilk; I used a pie plate.

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okra soaking in buttermilk

Stir together cornmeal mix and next 3 ingredients in a separate pie plate.

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Remove okra from buttermilk, in batches, using a slotted spoon, and dredge in cornmeal mixture. Shake off excess, and put on plate until ready to fry.

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Dredge okra “fingers” in cornmeal mixture.

I use an electric skillet and vegetable oil heated to 375°. You could also use a cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven. I like to use the electric skillet so I can set up my frying station on the patio and keep the smell of fried food out of the house.

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Pretty view while frying okra!

Fry okra, in batches, 4 minutes or until golden, turning once.  Just like shrimp, the okra will stop sizzling when the moisture has cooked out, signaling that it’s time to get out of the frying pan!

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Fry until golden brown!

Drain on paper towels. Salt lightly. Enjoy!

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I was SO excited to see all the okra in this week’s box! In my opinion, It is the tastiest of all veggies. This is my favorite go-to okra recipe and my families’ favorite.  This comfort food does not have to be unhealthy; in fact it can be great for you! I fry with coconut oil because it is the best at withstanding high heat and is loaded with health benefits.  It contains high amounts of a saturated fat called medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), which actually help with weigh loss. Also coconut oil can normalize blood sugar and insulin production. It also strengthens the immune system. Who knew how beneficial this saturated fat could be! See, fat is not all bad, but, rather, a very important part of our diet.

In addition to the coconut oil I use almond flour, which is pure almond meal and naturally gluten free.

 

INGREDIENTS:

Sliced okra

coconut oil (enough to fill the pan 1-2″)

3-4 eggs

Almond flour (enough to fully coat the okra)

salt and pepper

red pepper flakes

 

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Start by slicing your okra into rounds or longs.

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Soak the okra in the 3-4 beaten eggs for about 15 minutes.

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Heat the oil in the pan over med high heat. Transfer a handful of the okra at a time into the almond flour and coat. Once coated, place into the hot oil to fry.

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Once the okra is in the pan cooking I sprinkle all my seasonings to taste. I use salt and pepper and some red pepper flakes.  Let fry until tender. Its best to taste as you cook and remove from heat when it is to your liking, because cooking times always vary. It does cook pretty quickly so make sure your flip them every couple minutes to avoid burning the almond flour. Also, feel free to keep adding oil as it cooks if you notice the okra burning or sticking to the pan. Lay the finished okra on a towel covered plate to absorb the extra oil before you serve.

Enjoy this southern comfort food without an ounce of guilt!

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Ingredients
  • Squash
  • Zucchini
  • Eggplant
  • Onions
  • Bell Peppers
  • Okra
  • Kabob Pork (You can buy from us, it is really, really yummy:) )

I wanted to cook my meat separate from all of the veggies so I could get the meat cooked they way I wanted without overcooking or undercooking the veggies.

Alternate between the Kabob Pork and onions on sticks and season with salt, garlic powder,  and black pepper, and stick them on the grill. (Unfortunately, I did not time how long they were on the grill because they turned out perfect – tender and juicy!)
Chop the squash, eggplant, zucchinni, bell peppers and onions into decent bite size pieces, actually more like thick slices so they will not take too long to cook.Alternate between all of them with onions between each veggie. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, garlic powder and black pepper on one side and stick on grill with the unseasoned side up. Drizzle and season again. Cook both sides about 5-10 minutes depending on preference. I like my veggies still a little crunchy with a nice grilled outer edge.

Okra – Just wash and stick on sticks through center and drizzle with olive oil and seasonings and cook like you would the veggie kabob.

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