This recipe, from Madhur Jaffrey’s A Taste of India, is part of SAVEUR’s November 2017 cookbook club. Though we’ve tested this recipe in the SAVEUR test kitchen, we present it in its original, unedited form from the book. Says Jaffrey:
This absolutely delicious dish is a great favorite with my family. The okra is stuffed very simply with coriander, cumin, and lots of amchoor, a tart, green mango powder that is sold in most Indian grocery shops. If, for some reason, you cannot find it, leave it out. Instead, sprinkle about 2 tsp of lemon juice over the top of the okra just when you are ready to cover it for the final 5 minutes of cooking. Stuffed okra is very versatile and may be served with almost any meal.
- 3⁄4 lb. whole, fresh okra
- 1 tbsp. ground coriander seeds
- 1 tbsp. ground cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp. ground amchoor or 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 1⁄4 tsp. red chilli powder
- 1⁄2 tsp. salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 small onion, peeled, cut in half lengthwise and then cut crosswise into fine half rings
- 6 tbsp. vegetable oil
- Rinse off the okra and pat with absorbent paper towels until quite dry. Trim the okra by cutting off the bottom tip and the top cone.
- In a bowl, mix together the coriander, cumin, vegetable oil, chili powder, salt and black pepper.
- One at a time, hold an okra in one hand and with the other make a long slit in it using a sharp knife. The slit should stop at least 1⁄4 in. short of the two ends and it should not go right through the pod. Stick a thumb into the slit to keep it open and with the other hand, take generous pinches of the stuffing and push them into the opening. Stuff all the okra this way. There should be enough stuffing to fill the pods.
- Over a medium-high flame, heat the oil in a frying pan that is large enough to hold all the okra in a single layer. Put in the onion. Stir and fry until the onion just begins to brown. Stir and fry until the onion just begins to brown. Put the okra in a single layer and turn the heat to medium low. The okra should cook slowly, uncovered. Gently turn the okra pods around until all sides are very lightly browned. This should take about 15 minutes. Cover the pan, turn the heat to low and cook for another 5 minutes.