Simple dry curry okra

As a kid, I hated okra.

We used to call it ‘ladies fingers’, to which my dad would quip they were really ‘mens’ toes’ – much to our growing dismay as we grew up. It’s a bad ‘Dad joke’, but not the worst by any means.

But it wasn’t so much its name that turned me off this vegetable. It was the clear slime that would ooze out when exposed to water, especially after you have cut them. And if cooked in certain ways, that slime sticks around.

However, as an adult, I’ve learnt to love this underrated vegetable. It is a good source of protein, iron, dietary fiber, vitamins A, C and K, folate, calcium, magnesium, potassium and manganese. And it keeps better in the fridge than lettuce and most greens.

When cooked in thin curries or flash fried, that slimey quality is much reduced. In this simple recipe, the okra is flash fried and allowed to steam in its own moisture to cook through.

Just remember to pat the okra dry after washing to cut them.


Simple dry curry okra

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Simple dry curry okra


  • 500 gm okra/lady fingers, stems removed and sliced down lengthways
  • 50 gm onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp gram masala powder
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tbsp yoghurt
  • 50 gm red pepper, chopped
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • Salt to taste


  1. Heat oil in a pot/wok on medium heat until the surface ripples.
  2. Add cumin seeds and garlic.
  3. When the cumin seeds fizzle, add the chopped onion and cook until translucent.
  4. Add the okra and stir thoroughly before putting on the pot/wok lid. Leave to cook for 2 mins.
  5. Add the spice powders: coriander, turmeric, gram masala and chilli. Stir thoroughly.
  6. Add the red peppers and stir before replacing the lid. Leave to cook for 1 min.
  7. Stir through the yoghurt and add salt to taste.
  8. Serve hot.