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Aug 12, 2012 02:54 PM

okra in the pressure cooker

I attempted to cook an okra stew in the pressure cooker and ended up with a tasteless, slimey mess. Here's what I did: I sauteed some mustard and cumin seeds in oil briefly and added a chopped onion and cooked it down a bit. I stirred in a drained can of beans and stirred in a bit of curry powder. I added about a shot's worth of almond milk. Then I put in the okra and topped it with some chopped tomatos. When it didn't come up to pressure I added about 1/4 cup of water. I cooked at pressure for 2 1/2 minutes. I ended up with slimey glop. It did seem to be taking a long time to come up to pressure so perhaps it all just over-cooked. I don't understand why that happened, however, as my Kuhn R generally doesn't require more liquid than that to come up and the pc is otherwise functioning so I figure the gasket is ok. (I cooked something else in it today without a problem.) Ideas? I've only cooked okra a few times before ever and this was my first time trying it in the pc.

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  1. When I cook okra I saute the onions and green pepper, add the tomatoes and cook for a few minutes, then I add the okra AND IMMEDIATELY TURN THE STOVE OFF. Just the heat of the mixture is enough to cook it as far as I want it cooked. Okra to me is like bean sprouts---just warm through or it turns (they turn) to snot.

    1. Couple of things. Okra needs to be handled differently, depending on how you intend to cook it. For frying, a vinegar soak followed by a good rinse and drain then an hour or so on the counter top to dry before breading works pretty well. For soups, allowing it to dry before putting it into the mix (a couple of hours of sliced Okra in the sun) works well. A couple of things Okra doesn't like. It doesn't like to be cook in a covered pot. Steam and Okra don't go well together. It prefers to cook quickly and not spend too much time on the heat in any kind of recipe. So a pressure cooker would be an unwelcome environment for Okra.

      3 Replies
      1. re: todao

        And I don't recommend slicing it with a food processor.

        1. re: todao

          When discussing okra - is there a difference between what is needed between the larger varieties of okra and the smaller Middle Eastern kind?

          I recently make a slow cook okra, chickpea and tomato stew with okra - and it wasn't bad (the slim factor wasn't signficant, they held their shape), but are there suggestions for using the very small Middle Eastern okra?

        2. Thank you for your replies! Very helpful.

          1. Sounds like you attempted an Indian style dish. I always cook mine uncovered in a skillet. Sauté your seeds, then your onion, then your spices. Add your cut okra and cook over medium heat until soft and the slime is gone. Then add your drained beans.

            1 Reply
            1. re: boogiebaby

              Learned this from making gumbo. Fry the okra before adding it to your dish. Frying seals the okra. When you add it after frying it will hold it's shape better and not turn everything gooey.

            2. I cook okra in my pressure cooker but only cook it for 1 minute. It is not usually down in the bottom of the cooker. It sounds to me as if you did no have enough liquid in the cooker and that by the time that you realized that, the okra had started to cook and get slimy.

              I make a dish that is eggplant, okra and corn with tamarind and it's extremely tasty, with the okra cooked at pressure for 1 minute after the eggplant has been cooked a bit at pressure.

              I also always hand chop the okra into pieces that are about one half inch wide. I love okra and will continue to pressure cook it as long as it turns out "right".

              You might want to try again.