Roasting is an excellent way prepare just about any vegetable, as there is very little prep time involved. Plus, the light browning—or caramelization— from the heat of the oven enhances the natural sweetness and flavor of the vegetables. This roasted okra with tomatoes is an excellent example. With only 3 ingredients plus kosher salt and pepper, the okra and tomatoes are the stars of the dish.
The winning combination of fresh sliced okra and sweet grape tomatoes makes a delicious side dish for any meal. In this recipe, the okra is sliced, combined with the tomatoes, then roasted to perfection with a small amount of olive oil and some seasonings.
Okra often gets a bad rap because of its off-putting texture. Roasting the okra offers a bonus; the okra loses that "slimy" mouthfeel. So, if you like the taste of okra but are put off by the texture, this roasting method just might change your mind.
- 8 ounces okra, about 20 to 24 pods (1 to 1 1/2 cups sliced)
- 1 cup grape tomatoes (or cherry tomatoes)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
- Heat the oven to 425 F (220 C/Gas 7).
- Brush a large rimmed baking sheet with olive oil or line the pan with foil and brush the foil.
- Rinse the okra and pat dry with paper towels. Trim the pods, discarding the stem ends and tips. Slice the okra pods into 1/2-inch rounds and put them in a large bowl.
- Slice the grape tomatoes in half (lengthwise or crosswise) or slice in 3 or 4 pieces if they are large. Put the sliced tomatoes in the bowl with the okra.
- Drizzle the olive oil over the okra and tomato mixture and then season with the salt and pepper. Toss to coat well.
- Arrange the seasoned okra and tomatoes in a single layer in the prepared baking pan.
- Bake the vegetables for 15 to 20 minutes, or until lightly browned around the edges, turning occasionally.
- When shopping for okra, choose bright green pods free of damage and blemishes. Avoid larger pods, which can be fibrous and tough. Smaller pods (4 inches or under) are best.
- Keep fresh okra refrigerated in plastic food storage bags for up to 3 days.
- Add one small sliced onion or shallot to the okra and tomatoes. Toss with the oil and roast as directed in the recipe.
- To add extra flavor easily without extra ingredients, try a flavor infused olive oil. Some excellent possibilities include garlic olive oil, smoky bacon olive oil, lemon or lime, or a butter-flavored oil.
- Corn is another vegetable that pairs well with okra. Cut fresh corn kernels from one or two cobs and toss them with the okra and tomatoes.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||7 g|
|Saturated Fat||1 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||5 g|
|Dietary Fiber||2 g|