Even those who are not entirely sure how they feel about okra love this irresistible classic appetizer from the South.
Makes 4 servings
- 1 lb. (450 g) fresh okra
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1-2 tsp. (5-10 mL) hot sauce
- 1 cup (250 mL) cornmeal
- 1⁄2 tsp. (2 mL) salt
- 1⁄2 tsp. (2 mL) ground black pepper
- Vegetable oil as needed for deep-frying
1. Rinse okra well under running water. Trim off ends and discard. Using a small, sharp knife, slice width-wise into 1⁄2-inch (1-cm) pieces. Set aside.
2. Combine eggs and hot sauce in a mixing bowl. Add okra and toss to coat well. Pour cornmeal onto a shallow dish or plate; add salt and pepper. Using a fork, mix seasonings and cornmeal together well.
3. Dredge okra pieces a few at a time in the cornmeal mixture; coat well. Transfer pieces to a sheet of waxed paper as you work.
4. Heat the oil in your deep fryer to 375°F (190°C). If you don’t have a deep fryer, use a large, deep, heavy-based pot, placed over high heat. Make sure you have a proper thermometer to gauge the temperature (you may have to reduce heat to medium-high once the temperature is reached). Line a baking sheet with paper towels and set to one side.
5. When oil is hot enough, fry okra in batches (don’t crowd) for 4 to 5 minutes or until golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to transfer pieces to baking sheet to drain. Serve immediately, with extra hot sauce if desired.