Okra. Winged beans. Thua phu. Heart of palm. palmito. Market. Chiang Mai. Thailand. Asia. (Photo by: Paolo Reda/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Food - Drink
The Okra Cooking Method That Could Win Over Its Haters
Okra is not something that everyone swoons over, mainly due to its interior full of slime, also known as mucilage. However, okra is full of fiber and can decrease oxidative stress, inflammation, and even cancer risk, so to conquer the goo and enjoy these benefits — and maybe even enjoy the okra itself — try this cooking technique.
Most okra recipes call for slicing it into circular shapes, but Food & Wine suggests cutting okra vertically into thin strips. Stir-fry your okra strips in a hot pan until they're crispy and browned on the outside, and you'll find that all the mucilage (or most of it) has seemingly disappeared, leading to a much less slimy side dish.
Southern Living explains that when okra is cooked for a long time, its sugars are slowly released, which seems to enhance its slimy texture. This is an advantage in dishes like gumbo, which rely on okra as a thickening agent, but to eat okra on its own, a brief cooking time using intense heat keeps the slime to a minimum.