When most people think of okra, three scenarios come to mind:
Not many people get pumped about okra.
And those people just haven’t tried it roasted yet.
As y’all know, I’m a born-n-bred East Tennessean, where we are no strangers to this summertime staple. And now that I’m officially a Texan, I’m equally thrilled to see my fellow countrymen (Texas=its own country after all) are just as enthused as I am.
Sure, I love and appreciate a good batch of fried okra. A sweet cornmeal breading, a lil bacon grease…what’s not to love. In fact, I have an oven-fried okra recipe that is STINKIN delicious. Click here for the recipe and to start up your salivary glands.
But, it requires a pinch of effort…slicing the okra. Making and dredging it in a gluten-free coating.
Okay, so that adds roughly 5 minutes of prep into the okra preparations.
And some days, I just want some crispy okra ASAP without the fuss and mess of breading it.
Did you know you can just roast your okra instead?
No slicing (unless you want to bedhead them).
No messy breading.
No oily spatter all over your kitchen counters and shirt and skin.
Just crispy, crunchy okra goodness in 25 minutes from start to finish.
Oh, and it’s 100% Paleo and 100% vegan.
Not convinced yet? It's happens to be a sneaky superfood, too.
When most of y’all’s neighbors offer to share food with y’all, it’s often lackluster leftovers, like half a slab of grocery store birthday cake from Aunt Minnie’s 82nd birthday bash. Or a nearly wilted head of lettuce they throw your way before they leave town.
Not my neighbors.
They share venison.
They share tamales.
They share homegrown tomatoes.
And they share freshly picked okra.
I am loved.
If you haven’t learned that my love language is food yet, then today’s the day you learn that fact.
So when my neighbor dropped a few pounds of fresh Texas okra on my doorstep this past weekend, I knew exactly what was in store for it: toasty roasty deliciousness!!!!
Before we get to the recipe, did you know that okra is actually a nutrient-rich little member of the mallow family (cousin to cotton, cocoa, and hibiscus…not marshmellows)?
Noshing on these lil pods has been linked to:
On top of all that, 1 cup of the stuff is only 33 calories.
Now, onto the recipe tips.
Crazy simple, y’all…
Just line up your pods on a lined baking sheet. Give them some space. If they’re too cozy, they’ll steam and be mushy and soft. Gross.
Brush them with your fat of choice.
My choice? DUCK FAT. It lends such a rich umami flavor to the okra. Just a tiny amount is all you need, which is why I recommend you brush it on instead of pouring it on. Below’s the duck fat I use if you wanna change your culinary life forever. FOR. EV. ER.
Sprinkle with seasoning salt or make your own blend of black pepper, salt, smoked paprika, and chili powder.
Throw them in the oven for 20ish minutes, rolling them around halfway through and upping your oven temp for the final few minutes.
Serve them straight up or with ketchup, sriracha, or, if you’re my brother, ranch dressing.
Or, try them with fried eggs for a savory and oh-so-satisfying breakfast!
Alrighty my little pudding pops. Get a move on with this okra recipe before this savory summer staple leaves us for the year!
LET'S CHAT: Where do you stand with okra? Are you as overwhelmed with enthusiasm about it as I am? Do you just like it deep fried? Are you a pickled okra kinda person? Or does someone have to pay you to ingest it?
Healthy Happy Texan
I'm a Foodie, Fitness Instructor, and Follower of Christ. Add a passion for teaching others, dark chocolate, bacon, and dogs -- and that's me in a box.
Come on, let's live a little!