Roasted okra is such a simple appetizer or side dish, it would be foolhardy not to add it to your menu, when you next have folks visiting. Preparation and cooking is quick and easy, allowing you to lay your concentration on the more labor intensive dishes on your menu. You may be asking, what makes roasted okra such a slam dunk for serving to guests? Well, first, as I said, they are so easy to prepare, and second, they look beautiful just sitting there on a plate or in a bowl dressed in nothing but a little oil and coarse ground salt.
Roasted okra is also a great option for adding to weeknight meals, so no need to wait for a gathering of friends and family to try this recipe.
I am a recent convert to the wonders of okra, it was never something I would choose from a menu, and I would avoid it whenever the occasion arose where I was offered it at someone’s home. I always thought of okra as a somewhat disgusting, slimy excuse for green veg and wouldn’t let it pass my lips, not for all the tea in Marks & Spencer – and you know I love Marks & Spencer tea! The secret to avoiding sloppy okra is simple, roast them. So long as you don’t over cook them, they’re amazing.
I first experienced great tasting okra when I was in Miami for the Caribbean carnival. Oh what fun I had, click here to see what I got up to when I was there. Yardbird in Miami, have charred okra with cotija, brown butter and lemon juice on their menu. I visited Miami with my niece and her mother, we had the charred okra as an appetizer, we skipped the cotija, and just had our serving with brown butter and lemon juice, and my oh my, a new obsession was born. Yardbird serve their charred okra in 4 inch earthenware which kept the okra wonderfully warm, so we could keep dipping in and enjoying our appetizer throughout the duration of our meal – what a great idea.
Since my experience at Yardbird, I have been enjoying okra on a regular. I usually go for roasted okra and have it with fish for dinner on a weeknight. Roasted okra is so quick and easy to make, I can rustle some up with a tasty piece of fish in less than 30 minutes, and be in front of the TV in time to shout out the answers to the questions on Family Feud.
So join me in my new obsession and try this recipe soon. Let me know if you like it.
- 1 lb fresh okra
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Salt to taste
- Lemon juice (optional)
- Large bowl
- Large baking tray
- Rinse okra, drain and allow to dry. You can carefully pat with paper towel to hasten the drying process.
- Trim away the large stems, then place okra into a large bowl.
- Drizzle with olive oil and half of your desired amount of salt.
- Toss until coated, then transfer to baking tray. Ensure okra forms just one layer on baking tray.
- Place in a preheated oven at 450 and cook for 15 minutes, shaking baking tray every 5 minutes to brown the okra on all sides.
- Test one or two okra to ensure you do not overcook them.
- Once cooked, serve with balance of salt.
- Drizzle with lemon juice if desired.