Okra


Quick Facts

Availability: Summer
Quantity: 1 pound bag
Grown:  Field
Grown by: Production Intern

Storage and Preparation

Short Term Storage: Store okra unwashed in an open plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Long Term Storage: Okra can be frozen or pickled

More information from ISU extension on:
Freezing

Preparation: Before cooking, wash okra thoroughly under running water scrubbing off all dirt and residue.

Pairings and Nutrition

Pairings: Okra can be cooked in many different ways.  When the seed pods are cooked a goo forms from the soluble fiber.  Okra can be sautéed, grilled, fried, oven roasted, pickled, or stewed.  Okra is typically breaded and fried or served used to make gumbo.  Okra is used in stews and sauces around the world to add thickness and flavor.
Nutrition: Adults should consume 2.5-3 cups of vegetables per day according to the USDA MyPlate recommendations.  Okra contains vitamin C.



Okra Recipes


Skillet-Roasted Okra and Shrimp
Ingredients:
  • ½ lb. fresh okra, halved lengthwise
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1 pt. grape tomatoes
  • 1 lb. peeled, large raw shrimp, deveined
  • ½ tsp. dried crushed red pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Directions:
  1. Sauté okra in 1 Tbsp. hot olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat 4 to 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer okra to a large bowl.
  2. Add tomatoes and 1 Tbsp. oil to skillet; sauté 3 minutes or until skins begin to burst. Transfer tomatoes to bowl with okra.
  3. Add shrimp and remaining 1 Tbsp. oil to skillet; sprinkle shrimp with red pepper. Sauté 2 to 3 minutes or just until shrimp turn pink. Add garlic; sauté 30 seconds.
  4. Stir in okra mixture, and sauté 1 to 2 minutes or until hot. Stir in salt, pepper, and parsley.

 Oven-Fried Okra
Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Dash of ground red pepper
  • 1/2 cup fat-free buttermilk
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 pound fresh okra pods, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch slices (about 3 cups)
  • Cooking spray
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 450º.
  2. Combine cornmeal, 1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper, and red pepper in a shallow dish; set aside.
  3. Combine buttermilk and egg in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add okra; toss to coat. Let stand 3 minutes.
  4. Dredge okra in cornmeal mixture.
  5. Place okra on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat okra with cooking spray.
  6. Bake at 450º for 40 minutes, stirring once.
  7. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

 Chicken and Okra Stew
Ingredients:

  • 4 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, quartered
  • 1 habanero pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped celery
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped plum tomato
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 pound fresh okra pods, cut into 1-inch pieces
Directions:
  1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add half of chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove chicken from pan.
  2. Add remaining chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove chicken from pan.
  3. Cut habanero in half. Seed one half of pepper, and leave seeds in other half. Mince both pepper halves.
  4. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add minced habanero, bell pepper, onion, and celery; sauté 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add tomato; cook 3 minutes or until tomato softens.
  6. Add parsley and next 5 ingredients (through broth); bring to a boil.
  7. Return chicken to pan; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Add okra; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until okra is just tender.

 Grilled Okra and Tomato Skewers
Ingredients:
  • 2 small onions, each cut into 8 wedges
  • 24 okra pods (about 3/4 pound), trimmed
  • 16 cherry tomatoes (about 1/2 pound)
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Prepare grill.
  2. Divide each onion wedge into 2 equal pieces. Thread 3 okra pods, 2 cherry tomatoes, and 2 onion pieces alternately onto each of 8 (12-inch) skewers.
  3. Combine olive oil, kosher salt, and the remaining ingredients except for cooking spray in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
  4. Brush olive oil mixture over the skewers. Place the skewers on a grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill skewers for 3 minutes on each side or until tender.