- vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- 400 g Woolworths fresh okra
- 1½ cups buttermilk
- 120 g flour
- 70 g maize meal
- 1 t smoked paprika
- 1 t garlic powder
- 1 t Cajun spice
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 T parsley, chopped, to garnish
1. Heat enough oil for deep frying in a medium-sized saucepan. Remove the stem ends of the okra, then slice each pod into 2 cm-thick pieces.
2. Place the buttermilk in a large bowl, then add the okra and coat evenly in the buttermilk.
3. Place the flour, maize meal, paprika, garlic powder, Cajun spice and salt and pepper in a medium sized bowl. Stir to combine.
4 Remove the okra from the buttermilk and evenly coat in the spiced flour mixture. Work in batches to ensure even coating.
5. Once the oil is hot, fry the okra in batches for 3 minutes or until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper.
6. Garnish with parsley and serve with your choice of dipping sauce.
Cook's note: Okra is an edible seed pod popular in West Africa and the south of the United States. Sometimes referred to as lady’s finger, it comes in two colours – red and green. Both taste the same, and the red turns green when cooked. Aside from deep-frying it, you can also use it in stews as a vegetable or as a thickener. It has a sweet, grassy flavour that takes on more depth when cooked for longer, and can be crisp and juicy or dense and creamy. Look for firm, springy pods with no mushy, yellowing spots.
Photograph: Jan Ras
Production: Bianca Strydom
Food assistant: Gail Damon