Vegan Roasted Fresh Okra with Horseradish Sauce

Yield: 4 servings

Bye-bye slime…hello sublime!

Do you know how some vegetables are utterly transformed by the cooking method, say, roasting broccoli or grilling radishes?   Well, this is one of those vegetables and methods.

As a southern gal, I love fried okra, though I don’t allow myself to have it much.  And, I used to love it in gumbo when I was a pescatarian.  However, I’ve never found a vegan gumbo recipe I like–including at a local top notch fine dining restaurant–so I rarely bought okra because I didn’t know what to do with it.

But now I do!

Recently at Stoney’s, one of my favorite local farmer’s markets who grows both red and green okra,  I was debating about what I wanted to purchase.  One of the employees shared this method of roasting okra and I was sold!

It will forever change the way you think about this fury little veggie.  For the best crunchy exterior–and creamy center–it must be enjoyed immediately after removing it from the oven.  Also, it is best not to layer the pieces of okra on top of each other to serve, as they will steam and, therefore, soften.

2 tablespoons olive oil

Approximately 2 cups of fresh okra, trimmed

Sea salt to taste

Vegan Horseradish Sauce or the sauce of your choice

Preheat oven to 45o degrees.  Pour olive oil into roasting pan.  I like to use a large cast iron skillet for this because it browns the okra so nicely.  Add okra and toss to coat.  Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and toss again.  Roast for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown on one side (I like it fairly caramelized), then turn each piece of okra and roast 5-8 minutes on opposite side or until golden brown.  Serve immediately in one layer with Vegan Horsearadish Sauce or any sauce you desire.  The texture of this okra is vastly superior if served as soon as it is removed from the oven.  If you are unable to serve it immediately, it will soften, but still taste good.  So, I recommend reheating it in a skillet over medium-high until heated through, shaking occasionally, just before serving.

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