Okra is often served fried and is pretty easy to prepare. Just roll in eggs and dip in a flour cornmeal mixture to get that crispy texture.
The combination of flour and cornbread give this fried okra a tasty outer layer that keeps it from becoming limp, even after cooking.
Fried okra is a dinnertime favorite in many Southern homes, and it could be a favorite in your home as well. It is great when served with burgers, hot dogs, sandwiches, or it can be a terrific side for your main entrees. Serve it with your next meal to find out what your family thinks of this healthy plant.
What is Okra?
Those who live in the south probably know of fried okra as a popular dish. But those in other parts of the country and the world may not even know what okra is. If you are one of those people, here’s the scoop.
Also known as Lady’s Fingers or ochro, okra is a flowering plant in the mallow family. It is cultivated in warm, subtropical climates. Its origin is disputed, with possibilities including West Africa, Ethiopia and South Asia.
The plants contain edible green seed pods. When cooked, they produce a goo or slime which contains soluble fiber. For this reason, they are often used in developing countries to solve malnutrition issues.
The goo it produces can also be made into non-caffeinated coffee. The oil from okra is extremely healthy. It is high in unsaturated fats as well as fiber, vitamins and minerals. Its leaves can also be cooked or eaten raw in salads.
Although often eaten during mealtimes, okra also has several industrial uses. It can be used as a biofuel. Bast fibre from the plant’s stem can be used to reinforce polymer composites. The mucilage it produces can remove turbidity from waste water due to the plant’s flocculent properties.
1 bag frozen cut-up okra
2 cups flour
2 cups cornmeal
salt and pepper
5 eggs, beaten
1. Heat about 1/4-inch of cooking oil in a frying pan.
2. Mix flour and cornmeal together. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Dredge okra in beaten eggs, then dredge in flour-cornmeal mixture.
4. Place okra in heated oil and fry on medium heat until golden brown. Stir occasionally so all sides are browned.
5. Drain on a paper towel. Serves 6.
Health Benefits of Okra
Okra is a nutritionally-dense food and a great choice for your next dinner. It's important for your family to eat well-balanced meals; part of that is ensuring they get enough fruit and vegetables each day. Let's explore some of the health benefits of okra.
First, okra is rich in a variety of nutrients. In particular, okra has high amounts of vitamin C and vitamin K. It also has notable quantities of magnesium, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin B6. Some of the nutrients in okra help support immune system health, proper blood clotting, and other vital bodily processes.
Okra also contains a good amount of fiber. Fiber is important for the health of your digestive system. Without enough fiber, your digestive system won't function well, which can lead to issues like bloating and constipation. Plus, some research has shown that diets rich in fiber can help protect you from certain complications and diseases.
Some of the antioxidants in okra have been linked to brain health. Since this antioxidant reduces inflammation, it is thought to help protect the brain from various age-related issues. From that, those who consume okra regularly may find that they have better cognitive and memory-linked skills as they age.