Okra Stuffed with Indian Spices (Bharwaan Bhindi)
Absolutely love this quick recipe for okra. Tastes delicious paired with plain lentils and roti or rice. This vegetable dish is a favorite on the lunch table in my house on the weekends. The spices are a mix of tangy and spicy. If you do not enjoy spice, omit the red chili powder and it will taste just as good.
Look for firm and small-sized okra’s and make sure to dry them thoroughly before use so they aren’t slimy when cooked. Cooking it uncovered on slow-heat is the key to retaining the bright green color.
Okra – 300 gms, small and firm
3 tbsp chickpea powder
2 tbsp coriander powder
1 tsp red chili powder (adjust to taste)
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1.5-2 tsp amchoor (dry mango powder)
Salt to taste
Wash the okra under cold running water. Spread the washed okra over a kitchen towel for at least 1 hour to completely dry them out. You could also use paper towel to remove all moisture from it. If the okra is not dry, it will be slimy when cooked.
Using a knife, cut out the bottom of each okra pod and make a cut (lengthwise) in the centre of the pod but not all the way. Keep aside.
In a pan, dry roast the chickpea flour on low heat until you smell a nice aroma. This will not take more than 3-4 minutes. Keep aside to cool.
Mix together all the dry spices in a bowl. Add the roasted chickpea flour (reserve a tsp for later use) to the spice mix. Now add 3 tbsp of oil and salt and mix to form a paste like consistency.
Stuff a teaspoon of this mixture into each okra pod by slightly opening up the slits. You will have some left over mixture, reserve that for later use.
Heat up 2 tbsp of oil in a pan and add the stuffed okra’s once the oil is hot. Toss the okra’s in hot oil for a min or two, before turning the heat to low. Now let the okra’s cook in the pan on low heat uncovered until done. This usually takes 15 minutes. After 8-9 minutes of cooking, if you have leftover spice mix and roasted chickpea flour, sprinkle that onto the okra’s and give it a toss so that the okra’s are coated with the mixtures. Now cook for another 5 minutes or until the okra is rich green and soft. Serve hot with rotis and daal.