Monday, June 9, 2014

Bharwan Bhindi/Stuffed Okra

One of my favourite summer vegetables happens to be okra. Cooked on its own or added to other veggies, they turn out so good. It's one vegetable that we have quite often in our house. The other day I stuffed them with spices. It's best to use similar-sized okras as they will cook better that way.

250 grams okra
4 green chillies, halved lengthwise with seeds intact
1 small onion, chopped
A quarter tsp cumin seeds
1 tomato, sliced
3 tbs oil

For the stuffing:
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
A quarter tsp coarsely grated pepper powder
A quarter tsp turmeric powder
Half tsp dried mango powder
1 heaped tsp masala from store bought stuffed chilli pickle, optional
Salt to taste (go slow on the salt if you add spices from pickles)

  • Wash and dry the okra with a kitchen towel.
  • Cut off the two ends and score lengthwise but keep the vegetable joined at one end.
  • Mix the spices for the stuffing. Take one okra and rub and fill with a bit of the mixed spice.
  • Continue till all the vegetables are stuffed. Keep aside.
  • Heat the oil in a pan. When it comes to smoking point, fry the green chillies. Remove. These can be used for garnishing the dish later.
  • Add the cumin seeds. As soon as they crackle, add the onions. Fry till they turn translucent.
  • Now gently add the stuffed okras and cook on a medium flame.
  • Keep covered. Add the tomatoes when the vegetables are half done.
  • Stir just a few times as over-stirring might lead to the stuffing spilling out in the pan and spices burn easily.
  • Check at regular intervals keeping the flame low to ensure that the okras do not burn.
  • Remove from the flame to a serving platter and garnish with the fried green chillies or herbs.
With red chilli powder already included in the recipe, the idea of fried green chillies may not be all that appealing. But we love that extra heat and with fried dishes, particularly with fish, fried green chillies are a must!:) All those extra spices fill the kitchen and the house with an aroma that makes you want to go grab a plate!
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