This recipe gives okra (also know as “ladyfingers”) a different flavor altogether because it is stuffed with garlic, ginger and a spiced tomato masala and then simply sautéed in onions till it becomes a bit caramelized.
Stuffed Okra is usually eaten with rice and wheat rotli in most Indian households, but tastes great with any type of Indian bread. Usually stuffed okra is a bit of a drier curry, but I’ve added some extra tomatoes into my recipe for a little more moisture and sauce (although not too much like many other Indian curry dishes) for you to dip your breads in!
If you love okra or want to try okra for the first time, this dish is a great start! It’s pretty simple to prepare and has a ton of flavors I know you will really enjoy!
STUFFED OKRA (BHINDI MASALA)
- Masala Stuffing Mix:
- 4 Tbsp. tomatoes (finely diced)
- 2 Tbsp. fenugreek leaves (fresh or dried)
- 1 Tbsp. salt
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1 Tbsp. coriander powder (freshly ground if possible)
- 1 Tbsp. cumin powder (freshly ground if possible)
- 1.5 tsp. turmeric powder
- 1 Tbsp. of freshly chopped cilantro
- 1 Tbsp. ginger paste
- 1 Tbsp. garlic paste (minced garlic works too)
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. garam masala
- 1 Tbsp. oil
- 2 Tbsp. gram flour (chickpea flour)
- Sauté Mix:
- 1/2 cup oil
- ¼ cup tomato ketchup
- ¼ tsp. asafetida
- 1 cup water (1.5 cups for a more liquid curry sauce)
- 30-35 okra pieces
- 1 medium onion (finely diced)
- ¼ cup cilantro (for garnish (finely diced)
- In a small bowl, add all the masala stuffing ingredients and mix well till fully blended with a spoon, mashing the tomatoes in the process. (Should be a chunky blend)
- Clean the okra by running under water, cleaning each okra finger. Then take a dry towel and wipe each one till dry.
- Once cleaned, cut each okra half-way through but not entirely. You want to be able to stuff each okra with the masala mixture.
- Take about ¼ tsp worth of the masala mixture and stuff each okra finger. You want to have enough to fit inside. It should not be bulging too much out of each finger. Repeat with each and then set aside.
- In a large, open skillet, heat oil for sautéing.
- Once hot, add asafetida powder, ketchup and onions and sauté about 5-7 mins on medium-low heat till onions become lightly translucent.
- Place each stuffed okra in pan on top of the sautéed onion mix. (Don’t just dump the bowl into pot. It helps to place individually into pot to avoid any breakage.) Cook on medium heat for 7-10mins uncovered, stirring occasionally.
- Add water and stir gently to get liquid evenly around the okras.
- Cook uncovered for about 15-20 minutes on medium heat to help okras cook evenly and allow for a bit of caramelization to occur on the vegetables.
- After okras are cooked, place on desired serving dish and garnish with cilantro before serving.
- Eat with any Indian bread or rice.
NOTE: Keep an eye on okras while cooking to avoid any burning. The water allows the okra to remain tender during cooking process.
You will not be disappointed in this recipe. I’ve grown up on this stuffed okra recipe and its still one of my favorite vegetarian dishes. I love to eat with my wheat rotli and some plain yogurt because the yogurt mixes into the masala gravy and make it so creamy and flavorful. I recommend you try it too!
If you have any questions about this recipe or end up making it, let me know! Feel free to comment below, tag me on IG @cmspiceculture or catch me on FB at “Spice Culture Cooking.”