Momma’s Fried Okra

I have a parent from New England and a parent from the Midwest. My childhood was sprinkled with the cuisine’s from these two very different regions. Fantastic seafood (which I did not appreciate AT ALL as a kid, but now wish I had) and simple, hearty Midwestern (& great food with Hispanic flares) fare. And both love the cuisine from the other region. Today’s post comes from the Midwestern side. Growing up, I ate just about every vegetable I was served and loved them, still do. One of my absolute favorites have always been okra. I’ve been eating okra as long as I can remember. Holidays almost always meant pickled okra (yes, all Ledermans consume pickled okra at a probably alarming rate to outsiders). We also ate a lot of was fried okra and I’ve had it a lot of other places (if we visit a restaurant that has it, I try it) and I have yet to have any as good as my moms’. She tosses it in cornmeal that has been seasoned and pan fries it. We almost always had it with burgers and roasted potatoes. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

Momma’s Fried Okra

1 bag frozen okra pieces/slices
2 cups stoneground cornmeal
1 tbsp. garlic powder
Kosher salt
Cracked black pepper
Olive oil

Add cornmeal, garlic, salt & pepper to a bowl or something like a pie dish. Mix with fork, taste to make sure properly salted.
Okra should be slightly defrosted, not all the way.
Heat skillet, add olive oil to cover bottom. Let heat a minute, should sizzle when adding okra.
Toss a handful of okra in the cornmeal mixture and coat. Gently toss with fingers to remove excess cornmeal.
Gently place 1 batch in hot oil, don’t mess with it.
Cook 8-10 minutes until just brown on one side.
Use a spatula to turn and cook until just brown on the other side.
Remove to plate covered with paper towels.

Note: I made this last night with bbq pulled pork sandwiches and mac&cheese. Fried okra was the perfect pairing with those!


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