Okra -- Help!
I am making seafood stuffed peppers for a dinner party tonight. The recipe I have calls for adding shredded zucchini but I want to replace it with okra. I haven't really cooked much with okra before, would this work? Should I just slice it up? Here's my recipe
¾ pound shrimp
¾ pound crawfish
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated zucchini (about 1 large)
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 large egg
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tsp Creole seasoning
4 medium-size red bell peppers (each about 4 to 6 ounces), halved lengthwise, seeded
My plan had been to saute the sliced okra and onions and uncooked shrimp before mixing them with the rest of the ingredients. Then top the peppers with Creole sauce.
I like the idea of mixing celery in because I was ambivalent about the zucchini...I was so excited by the idea of okra though...i have just started eating it regularly now that I'm living in the South.
As you know...when you begin to saute the okra it is going to start getting slick, gooey, slimey, what ever you want to call it..if you don't think that will effect the consitantcy of the filling for the peppers then go for it....It would make me a bit nervous however....A little celery would be a big plus in the filling I think...
Have Fun & Welcome to the South!!
re: Uncle Bob
1 1/2 cups of celery may be to much, flavor wise, in that amount of stuffing...if the recipe calls for the zucchini then I would go 50/50 maybe or 1 cup zucchini 1/2 cup celery...Again I would play it safe, and not drift to far away form the core recipe with guest coming over..A little celery will add a nice flavor..along with the onion, and of course the pepper themselves...It will fit nicely with the theme of the dish!!
Cheers, and enjoy!!!
re: Uncle Bob
If you put the okra in the oil on very high heat it will seal it and prevent the slime problem. Toss in oil on high heat, then after 5-7 minutes you can add your other stuff and lower the heat to medium.
To the OP: I think you will end up with a totally different dish w/out the zucchini, but I also love okra and think it will work well.
It's an interesting idea...however for a dinner party I don't know if I would experiment...
The okra is going to react quite differently in the dish than zucchini...totally different texture...it will become much akin to boiled okra which in itself is not bad, but in your recipe...I don't think it is what you will be looking for...The zucchini does seem a bit out of place in the dish....maybe do 1/2 zucchini and 1/2 celery...which would be a big plus in the recipe from my point of view.......
Have Fun & Enjoy!
I don't think that is going to work, because the okra really needs to be cut into discs of about 1/2 inch, to hold the shape. The recipe calls for coarsely grated zucchini which would give the stuffing a smother consistency. The okra is going to make it chunky. If you sliced the okra thinner, I would guess it would lose it seeds, and I'm not sure that would be good. This is just my opinion, though. The only way my daughters like okra is breaded and fried, so I don't use it in other dishes. Hopefully someone else can add more ideas.
I imagine it would be okay if you really like okra. I know that you will not have as much slime factor if you grate it. One of my now favorite ways to cook okra is to use a technique by Suvir Saran where the okra is shaved thin lengthwise and then deep fried and topped with tomatoes, cilantro, lemon juice and chaat masala. I subed curry powder which tasted great. The presentation is fantastic as well. Would work well for a dinner party. Even my wife who is not a big okra fan loves this dish.
Suvir Saran’s Crispy Okra Salad
Canola oil for frying
1 lb. okra, stemmed and julienned lengthwise
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 medium tomato, cored, seeded, and julienned
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
Half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon salt
11/2 teaspoons chaat masala (available at Foods of India)