It is fairly rare that I come across somebody that celebrates a side dish quite to the extent that I do. So, when I see a side dish that combines sassy spices and okra, I am very, very excited! Okra, also known as gumbo or lady fingers (I kid you not), is a super low-calorie and nutrient dense little vegetable – posing some pretty perfect properties for a side or starter dish.
½ cup vegetable oil
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 serrano chile, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons finely chopped peeled ginger
1 pound fresh okra, halved lengthwise, quartered if large
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Lime wedges (for serving)
Heat 1/4 cup oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook 1 shallot, 2 garlic cloves, 1/2 chile, and 1 Tbsp. ginger, stirring, 30 seconds. Add half of okra and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender and golden brown, about 4 minutes; season with salt and pepper and transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining oil, shallot, garlic, chile, ginger, and okra, returning first batch to skillet when second batch has finished cooking.
Add lime juice and toss to combine.
Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over.
Photograph: Max Kelly