Masala Stuffed Okra

by Sala @ Veggie Belly on September 2, 2010

Documenting recipes was a big deal in my family. (That’s probably where I get my interest in food blogging from). Every family recipe was carefully tested and documented on paper. It was a huge, and ongoing project in my parents’ house. As kids, my siblings, any visiting cousins and I were constantly put to work, writing and re-writing recipes in notebooks.

There is a mountain of old notebooks at my parents’ house in India, their yellowing pages full of hand written recipes. When I moved out, I photocopied every single page of every single notebook. I take my photocopied family recipes everywhere I go. No matter what country, state, city or house I am moving to, the first thing I pack is my huge stack of photocopies.

About 10 years ago, my mother decided to go hi-tech. She hired a starving college kid to type out, catalogue and save the thousands of family recipes on CDs. I was given a copy of all these CDs.

The CDs are better organized and much easier to use. But somehow, I keep going back to my Xerox copies of the notebooks. I like shuffling through my stacks of paper. The fading ink, the dog eared edges, all remind me of a sweltering childhood kitchen filled with the aromas of Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
This is one recipe that will take me right back there. Served with rice and dal, it is my sister’s favorite.

A very small portion of my family recipes collection

We call this dish ‘nool katti vendakkai masala’ or string tied okra. The stuffed okra was tied with string and then deep fried. Tying the okra kept the stuffing inside it. My version of this recipe is a little easier. I don’t string tie the okra.

Notes

- Make sure you dry the okras very well before stuffing them
- Searing the stuffed okras on high heat initially will make sure they dont get slimy
-For a quicker version of this recipe, skip the roasting and grinding of spices; instead use chili powder, coriander powder and cumin powder

Stuffed okra is a common dish in India, but recipes vary from region to region. Aayi’s Recipes has a Konkan stuffed okra recipe using coconut. Hungry Desi’s stuffed okra boats recipe uses tomatoes. Sindhi Rasoi’s stuffed okra or dhaas bhindi or bharwan bhindi recipe uses spice powders.

 

Masala Stuffed Okra Recipe

serves about 4 as a side dish

For masala
½ teaspoon oil
3 red chilies
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
½ small onion, minced
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
¼ teaspoon turmeric
A pinch of asafetida
Salt

For the okra
½ lb fresh, tender Okra (about 30)
1-2 tablespoons oil

In a small skillet, heat the oil for masala and add red chilies, coriander seeds, cumin and fennel seeds. Fry on low heat just till the spices turn color and get fragrant. Remove the spices to a spice grinder and grind finely.

Wipe the skillet clean. Add a few drops of oil and fry the onions and garlic till onion is soft. Turn off heat. Add ground spices, turmeric, asafetida and salt to the onion mixture. Mix well. This is your stuffing masala.

Wash and dry the okra. Cut the tops off. Using a sharp knife, make an incision in the okra, starting from the top and stopping just before the tail. Do not cut all the way through the orka, it has to be one whole piece.

Place okra on a work surface. Using one hand, gently pry open the okra at the slit. (Careful not to tear it). Using your other hand, gently stuff a little masala into the slit and pack it down. Repeat for all okra pieces.

In a large, shallow non stick skillet, heat the oil. Add the stuffed okra, one at a time, stuffed side facing up, in a single layer. Cook on medium-high heat till the bottom sides of the okra are brown. Reduce heat to low, place a lid on the skillet, venting it a little, and cook for about 7 minutes or till the okra is tender. Then remove lid, carefully flip the okras over and cook 2 more minutes. Sprinkle salt all over. Serve hot with rice and dal.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Comments

comments

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

1 aipi September 2, 2010 at 7:08 pm

Oh!! I love this stuff..I make it almost the same way. Looks Great n your pictures are always BEAUTIFUL!!!!!

[Reply]

Reply

2 Soma September 2, 2010 at 7:08 pm

You are very fortunate to have the family recipes documented. I have none except for some memories of me in the kitchen with ma and grandma and a few written down by ma only for me. Now we ma or grandma no more there, it is more than “I miss the recipes”.. I get emotional.

This is pretty much the same way I make by stuffed bhindis, except the amount of coriander powder is more than the other spices.

[Reply]

Reply

3 Asha@FSK September 2, 2010 at 7:09 pm

I love the photos!! and okra are my favorite!!! Love them every which way :D

[Reply]

Reply

4 Sharmilee September 2, 2010 at 7:09 pm

Luv okras in any form and this looks too gud and interesting

[Reply]

Reply

5 satya September 2, 2010 at 11:29 pm

Okra is one of my favorite vegetables … it is the best comfort food n healthy too.. ur stuffed okra looks so tempting … with a bowl of rice there is nothing more to ask for : )

[Reply]

Reply

6 Prerna@IndianSimmer September 3, 2010 at 12:04 am

Beautiful photographs Sala!
That’s almost how my mom makes stuffed okra. She just doesn’t add any onion and adds a hint of aamchur. It tastes fabulous and I’m sure so does yours.

[Reply]

Reply

7 sangeeta September 3, 2010 at 12:33 am

I have a huge bundle of assorted papers which i keep shuffling whenever i am free , yes that is my recipe collection n yes i like the yellowing paper n torn margins while going through them too…..never fails to take you down the memory lane.
I remember my mom making stuffed okra , karela n parval tied with thread too and as a kid i used to think that the thread was a part of that veggie too :) :)
Lovely pics n a great recipe as always.

[Reply]

Reply

8 Rosa September 3, 2010 at 2:58 am

A fabulous dish! I’ve never cooked okra. That first click is heavenly!

Cheers,

Rosa

[Reply]

Reply

9 Preeti September 3, 2010 at 2:58 am

I prepare this recipe regularly but your pictures are just tempting dear!!!!!

[Reply]

Reply

10 debugcooking September 3, 2010 at 2:58 am

Okras are surely my fav and yes raised in a typical south indian family its one fav veggie for us..I remember my family also makes a stuffed aubergine like this..gr8 photos as usual sala

[Reply]

Reply

11 notyet100 September 3, 2010 at 2:58 am

okra looks so yum,..tnks for so mny links,..:-)

[Reply]

Reply

12 Kulsum@JourneyKitchen September 3, 2010 at 2:59 am

Wow! Love the pictures Sala. I pretty much make it the same way. Okra’s are such beautiful things but the only difficult part to it is washing and drying it. Or may its just me, the lazy one ? :)

[Reply]

Reply

13 mariona September 3, 2010 at 2:59 am

oh!! this is a beautiful story and a very tasty meal! I love okra. I will try this recipe very soon!
thank you :-)

[Reply]

Reply

14 Happy Cook September 3, 2010 at 2:59 am

Really clever of your mom to go high tech and do the recipes to a CD, but i agree with you the charm is in the hand written recipes, i think then you have the feeling that you are there with the person who wrote the recipe.
Okra looks so good though i have never had them filled.

[Reply]

Reply

15 Ching Teoh September 3, 2010 at 3:00 am

wow thank you so much for sharing this recipe for Okra.
Okra is my husband love :) I would try this recipe soon!

Thank you!

[Reply]

Reply

16 Shabitha Karthikeyan September 3, 2010 at 9:36 am

Lovely okra and awesome pics. Glad that you have all your family recipes documented. Lovely post !!

[Reply]

Reply

17 Priya September 3, 2010 at 9:46 am

Such a beautiful stuffed okras…very stunning clicks..

[Reply]

Reply

18 nan kutty September 3, 2010 at 10:49 am

Do we have to empty the okra of the seeds etc. before filling it. I thought there may no tbe enough space inside to stuff the masala–we should take something out before putting the masala in, no?

[Reply]

Sala @ Veggie Belly Reply:

no you dont. infact okra seeds are tasty! you create space for the masala simply by gently prying the slit okra open. you can get quite a bit of stuffing in there!

[Reply]

Reply

19 nandini.p September 3, 2010 at 5:26 pm

Looks lovely!!…. Would be delightful with curd rice!.

[Reply]

Reply

20 Xiaolu September 4, 2010 at 6:54 pm

What a lovely family tradition. And the image of college student typing away transferring so many family recipes makes me chuckle and smile. The okra dish itself looks absolutely delicious.

[Reply]

Reply

21 Viswa September 5, 2010 at 7:03 am

Truly like mother like daughter!!! Such nostalgia.. Hats off to you mom Sala.

[Reply]

Reply

22 Deesha September 6, 2010 at 5:00 am

A recipe CD, thatz neat :) Love love love this dish

[Reply]

Reply

23 Sanjeeta kk September 9, 2010 at 11:40 am

Lovely clicks! A simple okra looks gorgeous and cute. Nice read about the family collection.

[Reply]

Reply

24 Dr.Sameena September 10, 2010 at 7:13 am

Hi,

lovely lovely photography…..simple recipe but beautifully presented!!!

Dr.Sameena@

http://www.myeasytocookrecipes.blogspot.com
http://www.lovelypriyanka.blogspot.com

[Reply]

Reply

25 Pam @ Kitchen Cookware world September 14, 2010 at 2:08 am

I have never tried Okra like this, looks so amazing. I am surprised as they are not sticky in the pictures, how did you manage that?

I am glad you shared how you keep family recipes in CDs and paper. I have mine from my grandmother in handwritten notebook which is going to yellow and easy to tear with each turn but I love seeing her handwriting as I cook, I feel she is close to me. I want to put in plastic binder to preserve it better. CD would not have the same feeling.

[Reply]

Reply

26 Arjun September 15, 2010 at 12:19 pm

Mouth watering…..

[Reply]

Reply

27 shanthi September 16, 2010 at 2:56 am

Lovely recipes and fantastic clicks. Ya true I too have a different version in my blog.
http://shanthisthaligai.blogspot.com/

[Reply]

Reply

28 shanthi September 16, 2010 at 7:10 am

Lovely recipe and fanstic clicks. Ya true, I too have a different version in my blog.http://shanthisthaligai.blogspot.com/

[Reply]

Reply

29 Thai Green Curry September 23, 2010 at 6:10 am

Nice orka dish, looks tasty.

Jenny

[Reply]

Reply

30 Alka September 24, 2010 at 11:51 am

Your blog is so pretty, I am just staring at the pics from past 5 minutes or so…couldn’t concentrate on recipe at all..lol
Would love to try out this version, as I love stuffed veggies, so this will be a nice variation.
Btw did I told u, your blog is so pretty :-)

[Reply]

Reply

31 Ganesh December 15, 2010 at 4:14 pm

The pictures are indeed amazing, one of the most beautiful recipes for a long time! I guess I gotta try to redo it :D

[Reply]

Reply

32 Sanjiv Avashia July 16, 2011 at 11:07 pm

Brilliant recipes and outstanding pictures…Veggie belly stands out as the most unique one among all the recipe sites.

Sanjiv

[Reply]

Reply

33 Asha October 4, 2012 at 2:25 am

Hi, My mom used to make something similar, instead of frying okras we used to grill it. Its a low cal option for the health concious.

[Reply]

Reply

34 atul patel March 23, 2013 at 10:41 am

Awesome Receipe

[Reply]

Reply

Leave a Comment

Comment using OpenID

Page 1 of 11

Previous post:

Next post: