Remember the half a rack of BBQ ribs I had in Salt Lake two weeks ago? Fall off the bone tender and full of flavor, they were absolutely amazing! However, if you ask me, the best part of the meal combo and what I most enjoyed were the fried okra that came as sides. Crisp and boldly seasoned, I am so totally addicted I have been making them regularly since our Utah trip.
Breaded and deep-fried okra are a popular delicacy in the American Deep South and as this vegetable is also widely used in Filipino kitchens, I want to share with you how I prepare my own batch at home. The recipe comes together in less than 20 minutes and uses basic ingredients you probably already have on hand. I find a generous dash of salt and pepper enough to perk these babies up but you can easily amp up the spices by adding garlic powder and/or cayenne powder as well. The fried nuggets are usually served with buttermilk dressing but a hefty splash of spicy vinegar better suits my Pinoy tastes. If you are looking to add to your repertoire of pulutan, crisp and golden okra will make the perfect match to ice cold beer. Enjoy!
- 2 pounds fresh okra ends trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch rounds
- 3 to 4 cups oil
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- In a cast iron skillet or heavy bottomed pot over medium heat, heat oil to about 350 F. (No thermometer? Insert a wooden spoon into the oil, if the oil bubbles around the stick, it is hot and ready for deep frying.)
- In a bowl, whisk eggs until frothy. Add okra and stir to fully coat. In another bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, salt and pepper. Whisk together until well distributed. Dredge okra in flour mixture until fully coated.
- In the hot oil, add okra in batches and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 2 to 3 minutes or until golden and crisp. With a slotted spoon, remove okra from pot and drain on paper towels. Season with additional salt, if desired. Serve with spicy vinegar dip.