Okra & Tomato Curry

Okra & Tomato Curry recipe by SeasonWithSpice.com

Earlier in the summer, I was standing in the garden, holding one, unopened packet of Okra seeds trying to figure out where to plant them.  All the rows were taken, but I wasn’t leaving until those seeds were in the ground. 

I had earlier gone shopping and couldn’t find Lady’s Fingers (what we call okra in Malaysia). Disappointed I couldn’t cook the vegetarian okra curry I had planned, I walked over to the gardening area of the store and found one untouched row of okra seed packets.  It was clear Minnesotans weren’t fond of the delicious, slimy, green pods.

okra in the garden

Back in the garden, the tomato plants were well on their way, so I dug a trench around them and planted the okra seeds.  Two months later, the okra fence was fully grown, and with much larger okra pods than I expected.

Okra is a common vegetable found in Malaysian morning markets since it used in a wide variety of dishes such as Fried Okra, Sambal Okra, Okra Curry, and Stir-Fried Okra.  But even though I was familiar with the veggie, I had never grown it.  And I had no idea that if you don’t harvest it early, it will just keep getting bigger and quickly become inedible.

After a wasted first harvest with too many hard pods (you’ll know if they are too hard when a sharp kitchen knife struggles to slice through one), I made sure not to make the same mistake again.  Once the new pods grew to 2-3 inches, I snipped them off, and along with a handful of ripe tomatoes, brought them into the kitchen to cook up this Okra & Tomato Curry.

Using our Sweet Curry Powder, and a touch of our Garam Masala, this Okra & Tomato Curry has a rich flavor that instantly reminded me of the Indian veggie curries I eat back home in Malaysia. A perfect dish for a cool, rainy fall day.

Okra & Tomato Curry by SeasonWithSpice.com

Okra & Tomato Curry recipe by Season with Spice
Serve 3-4

4 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
1 medium yellow onions – sliced
4-5 cloves garlic – minced
1/2 lb okra – trimmed, dried and sliced into 1-inch pieces
2 medium tomatoes – diced
2 tsp of Season with Spice’s Sweet Curry Powder
1/4 tsp of Season with Spice’s Garam Masala
Pinches of Kashmiri Chili Powder, optional
1/4 cup water
Pinch of salt, or to taste
Squeeze of lemon juice
A handful of fresh cilantro leaves – roughly chopped

1. Heat oil in a large frying pan or wok over medium fire. Add in onions and sauté until they begin turning brown. Then add in the minced garlic and continue cooking until fragrant and lightly browned.
2. Add the okra into the pan, stir well, and cook for 10 minutes. Pour in a little bit of water if it gets too dry while cooking. Then, add in the tomatoes, sweet curry powder, garam masala & kashmiri chili powder. Mix well and continue to sauté until the tomatoes become soft & pulpy. Add in the water, stir gently, and let simmer for another 4-5 minutes until the curry thickens. Sprinkle in salt, and taste & adjust.
3. Turn heat off. Squeeze in some lemon juice and garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve the okra & tomato curry over basmati rice, brown rice, or chapati. Add a dollop of plain yogurt too. Delicious!