More Okrafusion

This afternoon I found another good recipe for okra. Searching online for recipes, I came across what appears to be a Malaysian recipe for okra and fried egg. After reading a couple of variations, I decided it would be fun to try, though of course, I lacked a few ingredients so had to make do. And I thought I’d add a few other vegetables. Here’s what I did:

In olive oil, I sautéed onion and garlic, plus some fresh fennel seed (from a plant that’s gone to seed). I then added the okra, cut into 1-2 inch pieces (I cut most pods in half). I also added some red bell pepper, and a small tomato. Finally, I added some more spices: cumin, turmeric, pepper, and basil. After this had all sautéed for awhile, I mixed up 4 eggs and scrambled them into the pan.

That was all pretty close to the recipes I had found. Here comes the fusion part, though. Those recipes called for white rice, but we were out. So I cooked up some grits to have on the side. And since we love cheese grits anyway, I added some grated cheddar cheese. I served the grits on one side of the plate and the okra on the other, overlapping a little, so you could see both individually. Serve with sriracha if you want to spice it up a bit.

Another okra recipe we have been enjoying this summer, I like to call barbecued okra. Yes, I’ve heard you can cook okra on the grill, but we rarely grill, so we don’t bother with that much. My barbecued okra is just pan fried with onion and garlic plus spices like cumin and cayenne, maybe some cardamom or coriander, then near the end, just add ketchup and Worcestershire sauce and let it coat the okra. I wouldn’t call this a main dish (like the fried okra with egg), but it’s a good side with other vegetables.

Published by Kendall Dunkelberg

I am a poet, translator, and professor of literature and creative writing at Mississippi University for Women, where I direct the Low-Res MFA in Creative Writing, the undergraduate concentration in creative writing, and the Eudora Welty Writers' Symposium. I have published three books of poetry, Barrier Island Suite, Time Capsules, and Landscapes and Architectures, as well as a collection of translations of the Belgian poet Paul Snoek, Hercules, Richelieu, and Nostradamus. I live in Columbus with my wife, Kim Whitehead; son, Aidan; and dog, Aleida.

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