This is a favourite of mine. Totally delicious…
Okra (Ladies fingers) in a poppy seed sauce
20-30 fresh okra (Ladies Fingers or Bendi)
3 tablespoons poppy seeds
3 medium hot dried red chillies
½ t each of salt and turmeric
For the coating/’sauce’
1 tablespoon peanut oil,
Small pinch of cumin, mustard seeds. Add 6-8 curry leaves
1. Cut the okra in half inch Lengths.
2. Roast poppy seeds in a dry, hot iron skillet for about 3 minutes. When they start to colour and you can smell the aromas, add dried red chillies and a pinch of salt. Grind or blend all the ingredients together to form a moist paste. I use my trusty pok-pok for this.
3. In a cast iron (best for this) skillet, heat the oil. Add and toast the cumin, mustard seeds, and curry leaves first and then the chopped okra. Mix well and slow fry. Do not stir much as this will break the okra. The moisture should cook out and the okra become slightly crisp. If you have one, use it for this recipe. Add the poppy seed powder, turmeric and salt. Mix gently and saute for a couple of minutes.
Serve this curry hot with chapatis or with rice and dal as a main course / side dish.