Monday, February 4, 2013

Okra ~ Two ways

Growing up, I had the pleasure of having my Great Grandmother and Grandmother in my life daily. I didn’t realize how much I would grow to love and respect this relationship until I was much, much older.
Much older….. (With age you gain wisdom, they say)
My Great Grandma was the one that taught me how to make my her famous Chicken and Dumplins. Oh how I wish she was still here to call and have long conversations with on days when I miss her tremendously. She was our afterschool care taker, our sickday care provider and our make every wish come true maker. I loved her, I love her and miss her still and its been 12 years. Her house was ground zero for our family. Every Sunday was dinner at her house, every birthday was shared there, and every holiday that had a reason to cook was spent around her kitchen bar or at the dinner table. Her house was even the place of a few weddings in our family and a few fancy family portraits. It has a lot of history and if the walls could talk I’m sure a lot of stories.
Every year my Great Grandma would always ask “Honey what would you like me to cook for your birthday?” She already knew the answer before I gave it to her because every year it was the same thing ~ “Grandma I want you to make fried chicken, fried potatoes, fried okra, macaroni and cheese and banana pudding!” EVA RE YEAR!
When something is good, why mess with it.
I also have the pleasure of almost sharing my birthday (short by 2 hours and 45 minutes to be exact) with my Grandma (Great Grandmas only child and daughter). Her birthday is one day before mine =)
So not only did I get my favorite meal on my birthday, I got to spend it with my favorite person, My Nana. I love that woman. We are so much alike without even knowing, that it is scary at times.
So every year, I got my favorite meal and shared a cake with my favorite lady. Best of both worlds, BEST!
I decided to add that same best of both words flare to one of my most favorite veggies – okra. Love me some okra!
Try okra two ways and see if you can choose a favorite, I can’t!
We have the roasted version.
Then we have the old fashioned southern fried but ah ha baked version.
Roasted Okra:
{Printable Link}
You will need:
  • 18 fresh okra pods, cut off ends but leave the tips (not frozen it doesn’t work right with frozen, just trust me on this one)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake in oven for about 10 – 15 minutes.
Original recipe found here.
Southern Baked “fried” Okra – Not that frozen stuff
{Printable Link}
You will need:
  • 18 fresh okra pods, cut in about 1 inch pieces. (not frozen it doesn’t work right with frozen, just trust me on this one)
  • 1 Cup plain corn meal
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Spray a baking pan with non stick spray and add the olive oil to the pan.
  3. After you've cut up the okra, add your corn meal, salt and pepper to a plastic zip lock bag or a bowl with a lid that can be used for shaking. Add the okra to that corn meal and shake shake shake. Making sure that the okra is coated well.
  4. Add the coated okra to the baking pan and spread out evenly so there is no clumps.
  5. Bake in oven for about 15-20 minutes or until nice and golden brown.
And there you have your Southern fried okra. Just like my grandma used to make but without actually frying it in the oil in a cast iron skillet on the top of her stove in the kitchen in January on my birthday or any day I needed good ole southern comfort.  I can smell it now……..
Ahhhh, okay distraction sorry.
I made ours with Eggplant Parmesan and Baked “fried” mushrooms, mmmmm. (We’ll talk about this later)
okra eggplant
Enjoy your Monday!
Oh and don’t forget to enter into my very first giveaway ever here! Good luck!


  1. I haven't had Okra in years. It sure brings back memories. And oh' my gosh your birthday dinner sounds so good. I still remember my grandma making her famous chicken and dumplins too. That was my absolute favorite thing by her. No-one including me does good old fashion Florida Cracker cooking like that anymore. I love reading about your sweet memory.

    OX's... Tracy@CottonPickinCute

    1. Thanks Tracy! If I could recreate that birthday dinner girl..... let me tell ya! I would be in heaven right along with her! Thanks for stopping by and the kind words! Oh and good luck :)