Sunday, August 14, 2016

Southern Fried

image from Pinterest

I inaugurated my new 12" electric skillet today.  This year I asked Brian to sow some okra (a vegetable he and many other Yankees cannot abide. My mother's family is resolutely Southern which may account for my taste in food) and made smashed fried okra. This recipe even works with those okra pods that have gotten a little big for their britches.

Recipe is a variation of the one on the Southern Living website.  I did not have any cornmeal handy.

1 lb okra, topped and tailed 
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
2 cups seasoned flour - I used self-rising flour and threw in salt, pepper, thyme and a little red pepper
oil for frying

Use a heavy object to smash the okra from stem to tip.  I thought the mallet called for in the original recipe would be a tad on the messy side so I opted for my late MIL's marble rolling pin. Worked a treat.

Place buttermilk in one shallow bowl and seasoned flour or cornmeal in another.  Dip the okra in the buttermilk and dredge in the flour, shaking off the excess. 

Heat 2" oil to 350-- this is where I deviated from SL again and heated it to 390⁰ -- and fry the okra in batches, turning once, until brown and crisp. Delicious.

Unfortunately this is hot, messy, and a great deal of work (not to mention you can't re-heat the leftovers and expect them to taste good), so I will probably wait until I have an okraphile guest before I do it again.  


Lady Anne said...

The Squire is from the Tennessee-North Carolina border, and he doesn't care for okra any way but pickled. Don't know if they carry it when you live, but Taste O' Texas is a good brand, and the stuff is delicious. Beyond that, it's one of God's less amusing tricks. I've never been a big fan of swamp slime, myself.

Bunnykins said...

Have you ever seen okra washed, topped, sliced into 1/4" slices, then simmered in water to cover? Looks like movie monster goo when done. West African style, served over yam flour or cream of wheat (grits) that's been mixed in a small bowl with boiling water to congeal it. Stewed meat and steamed green leafy veg on the side or over the top. Eat it with a desert spoon or bread to scoop together.

Or have you tried Greek style, cooked whole in tomato sauce with typical seasoning? Side dish for lamb.
I can eat the latter; can't ever look at the former.
Your breaded and fried sounds like a great alternative to the only other ways I know how to cook okra. I'm from Toronto. We don't get much southern cooking up here, but just about everything else.

Shay said...

I've eaten okra with tomatoes at a Greek restaurant in Detroit. It's ok.

It has been so long since I've deep fried anything I forgot two things -- what it does to my body's plumbing and how long the smell of hot fat lingers in the house.

Sam said...

Sorry, but I take the died hard Yankee side on okra, fried and lingering odor or not.
"Not" is my vote but then I detest Split Pea soup too. Blame my mother and her non-edible cooking experiments.

Kathleen C. said...

I've had okra a few times, and it's about half and half for me. I had an absolutely delicious fried version and decent stewed in a gumbo version, both at restaurants in Houston. And totally awful slimey versions of both everywhere else. So I will only ever eat okra again in Houston. About the only reason I'd return there too.

Lady Anne said...

Well, The Squire was out today and asked it I needed anything at the store, so I asked him to bring home some buttermilk, and I made up a batch of this. Quite tasty. Thanks for the recipe.

Shay said...

It's delicious -- I just have to figure out how to prepare it without leaving the kitchen smelling like fried food for two days.