I have fallen in love with okra and it is all my internet friend Jude’s fault – her love of okra got me checking them out at the supermarket and Asian grocers and thinking about recipes.
The season is nearly ended, I am guessing, so thoughts are turning to pickling Okra and to drying them. Some must be frozen as well. I am going to play with 2 or three ways to dry the okra, to see what we like best. I do have a dehydrator, but you can also dry okra in the sun, or in the oven.
Okra are easy to grow too, and drying okra is a great way to preserve an abundant crop. It also avoids the slimy nature of okra, definitely a plus. I have to be truthful and say that this is not a pretty item. But is it a light and crunchy snack with an amazing taste. They say it tastes of the garden and it is definitely more-ish. You have a great combination with some Dried Capsicum and Dried Okra.
In this recipe the okra is tossed with mustard or olive oil, salt and a little cayenne for a hint of spice. Select pods that are small – no larger than 6 – 8 cm. Larger okra can be stringy and tough.
You might like to browse all of our Okra dishes, and all of our Dried Vegetables. We have a guide to preserving Summer and Autumn fruits and vegetables for Winter. Or simply explore our Mid Autumn recipes.
okra in the dehydrator
Spicy Dried Okra
0.25 cups mustard or olive oil (or mix the two)
1 Tblspn sea salt
2 tspns cayenne pepper
Scrub the okra, rinse with cold water and either leave to air dry for several hours or pat dry with a towel.
Prepare the okra. Either halve them lengthwise, cut them into disks or leave whole. Place them in a large bowl.
Drizzle the oil over the prepared okra and toss well. Add the salt and cayenne and again toss to coat.
Transfer okra to dehydrator trays in a single layer. Dry them until crisp and breakable. It takes about 18-24 hours at 52C, depending on your dehydrator and the size of the okra. It may take shorter or longer, depending how thick they are – whole okra take quite a while. Raise the temperature of the dehydrator if you need to.
If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can dry okra in the oven. Spread half of the okra in a single layer on a wire rack sitting on an oven tray. Place in a 75C oven and turn the okra every 3 hours for 12 hours or until the okra is crunchy and breakable.
If you would like to use the free sunshine, place the okra on trays in the sun. Bring inside at night, turn and take out again in the morning. It will take several days to completely dry them.
The okra can be stored in an airtight container.
recipe notes and alternatives
The whole okra take some time to dry. Increase the temperature if you are using a deydrator.
These are very tasty. Make a whole lot if you don’t want them to disappear so quickly. Start with 1 kg – you may find you want to make 2kg! The most economical use of your dehydrator is to fill it.
I make my own chilli powder from home-dried red chillies and dried curry leaves. It is quite something. I use this chilli powder on the okra, but any store-bought or home made one will work.