I made this dish of Bhindi Gosht or Mutton with Okra a while ago and shared the photo on my Facebook page. It received quite a number of squeals of delight as it is quite a traditional recipe. But some of the readers had doubts about the recipe. I don’t blame them.
There are people who are mutton lovers and then there are people who love okra. Some love their mutton dishes and some love crispy okra. The one thing they don’t like is anyone trying to do something funny to their mutton or okra dishes. Like putting them in big pot and cooking them together. I had done the unpardonable. I had put some good chunk of goat meat and spoiled it by mixing it with okra. Even my biggest fan, my teenager, was a little skeptical when I first put this on the dining table.
“Am I going to like it?” she asked. “You won’t know until you try it, Bunbun”, said the mom. “Ohkaaaayyy!” ( insert teenager attitude + Grump)
I did understand the skepticism. There are not many people who like an okra when it is slimy and adding any kind of liquids to okra does make it rather slippery and slimy which is not a very nice thing to do to okra. And she usually likes her okra fried or sautéed. So this was a big step for her.
Then the teen ate it and then ate seconds. “Oh !it’s not funny to touch at all”, she squealed. I smiled (outwardly). (I told you so (very quiet inside the head))
So how do we cook okra and not make it slimy?
- Ensure you either pat them dry after washing or let them dry on their own. But before you cut them, they should be dry.
- Never overcrowd the pan when cooking
- Buy small tender pods.
- Let okra come to room temperature before cooking.
- Don’t add salt until the very end.
- If you need to add them in a soup, gumbo or a curry, precook on high heat before you finally add them in.
- Cook on high heat. That‘s all there is to cooking okra.