I know. I swore I would never eat okra, and here I am posting a recipe for fried okra. But I am a practical person, and this weekend found freshly picked okra on the counter, staring at me. Daring me. DH went to a friend's community garden plot to help harvest veggies and came home with the long green pods. They were fresh, organic and free. So I swallowed my pride and cooked okra for dinner.
Turns out, fried okra is pretty good as long as the coating is crunchy! I was able to achieve a fabulously crispy coating with coconut milk and millet flour that a fried okra eating friend said was really yummy. She and Anna liked theirs plain, Megan liked hers with ketchup, and DH and I liked ours with hot sauce. To each their own!
fresh okra, stems removed, chopped into bite-sized chunks
lite coconut milk
a few cups of canola oil
First, heat the oil in a fryer (oil level should be to the fryer's specifications) or a dutch oven over medium heat to 375 degrees. Meanwhile, stir together the coconut milk (about 1/2 can) with a splash of lemon juice. Working in batches, toss the okra in the coconut milk mixture and let it sit for a couple of minutes. The coconut milk will get thick thanks to okra's thickening properties - no egg needed here!
In a separate dish, whisk together about two cups of millet flour with some salt (about 1/2 teaspoon) and some cayenne pepper if desired (about 1/4 teaspoon). Toss the coconut milk-soaked okra with the millet flour mixture, coating the okra well. Fry the okra in batches in the hot oil until it looks crispy and golden brown, about 4 minutes. Drain the okra on paper towels, sprinkle with a little salt if needed, and serve hot.