This Indian Okra Curry features stir-fried okra tossed in a fragrant onion and tomato masala, making for a delicious and nutritious meal. With its easy preparation, this Bhindi bhaji dish is sure to become a favourite for anyone who loves Indian cuisine. Why takeaway, when you can make them at home in under 30 minutes!
About this homemade okra curry recipe (Bhindi bhaji)
Our homemade Okra Curry is an absolute winner and has passed the ultimate test – it’s been approved by our family! The best part? It’s so easy to make! It tastes better, if not same as the restaurant ones. With just a little care and attention, you’ll have a delicious and authentic Indian-style dish on your plate in no time.
To prepare this dry side dish curry without slime, you’ll need to cook the okra in two stages – first, stir fry it until it’s tender and crunchy, without any sliminess. Then, prepare a delicious onion and tomato masala with minimal spices and toss the okra into it. Voila! It’s that simple. Dry bhendi bhaji is ready in under 30 minutes. We recommend serving it with chapati and split pea dhal for a hearty and satisfying meal.
What is okra?
Okra is a green vegetable that is commonly used in Asian and African cuisines. It is also known as Bhindi in Hindi or Ladies Finger, owing to its long, finger-like shape. Okra has a mild flavour and a slightly crunchy texture, making it a versatile ingredient in a variety of dishes like bhindi masala, bhindi do pyaza, bhindi kadhi, a southindian okra raitha( vendakkai pachadi) and more.
In addition, okra is also packed with nutrients like vitamin C, fibre, and folate, making it a healthy addition to any diet.
How to Cook Okra for the Bhindi Bhaji
Wash and dry Okra: To cook the perfect Okra for Bhindi Bhaji, start by washing the bhindi thoroughly and laying it out on a clean towel to dry. If needed, use a kitchen towel or tissue to pat it dry to ensure that there’s no moisture left.
Chop Okra to the same size: Once it’s dry, take 4-5 okra of the same size and arrange them on a chopping board. Cut off the top of each one and slice them into pieces of 2-2.5cm in length. Repeat the process with the remaining bhindi.
Stir fry Okra: Heat some oil in a non-stick frying pan and add the sliced bhindi along with some salt. Cook the bhindi for around 7-8 minutes until it’s tender, crispy and without slime , making sure to toss it around in the pan once or twice within that time.
Once the okra is cooked to perfection, transfer it onto a plate and set aside.
How to make Indian Okra curry?
Fry aromatics: Start by heating some oil on medium flame in the same pan used for frying the okra. Add some cumin seeds, ginger juliennes, garlic, and green chilli, and fry them for 2-3 minutes, until they turn light brown in colour.
Add onion and spices: Next, add some diced onions and saute them for around 5-6 minutes until they turn translucent. Then, add the spices powder – turmeric, chilli powder, and ground cumin and stir them into the onion.
Add & Cook tomatoes: Add some diced tomatoes and salt, and combine everything together. Cover the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the tomatoes have softened. At this point, gently mash the tomatoes into the masala to mix everything well.
Add Okra: Now, add the stir-fried okra and toss it into the onion-tomato masala. Cook the mixture for another 3 minutes.
Serve: Finally, just before turning off the flame, add some mango powder (amchur) and lemon juice, and give everything a good toss. Transfer the curry to a serving dish and serve the Bhindi Bhaji hot.
Top tips to cook okra so it is not slimy
Here is what you need to do, so that your okra is cooked to perfection without any sliminess.
- Pick Tender Okra: Look for tender fresh okra that is slim, blemish-free, and soft to the touch. I prefer to handpick the okra instead of buying them in packets. A simple tip is to snap the tail end to check if it breaks instantly.
- Wash and Dry Thoroughly: Wash uncut okra under running tap water and dry it completely with a towel. Make sure there is no moisture left on the okra, as this can cause it to become slimy when cooked. If you have time, allow the okra to air dry.
- Add a Souring Agent: Adding a souring agent such as tomato, citrus( lemon/lime), tamarind, or amchur powder(mango powder) can help to immediately cut through any sliminess and ensure that the okra remains tender and crisp.
- Do Not Cover While Cooking: Covering the okra while cooking can cause excess moisture to build up and make it sticky and slimy. It’s best to leave the okra uncovered during cooking.
Why should you try this okra curry?
- This recipe is quick and easy, taking just under half an hour to make, which makes it perfect for busy weeknights or when you want a satisfying meal without spending hours in the kitchen.
- This Bhindi Bhaji recipe is perfect for vegans or anyone looking for a healthy and delicious vegetarian option.
- It’s an authentic Indian style Okra curry that tastes just like the ones you’d find at your local Indian takeaway or Indian restaurant.
- The best part is that most of the ingredients required for this recipe are easily available at your local grocery store or market.
- You can adjust the spice level to your liking, making it as mild or as spicy as you want.
What to serve with Okra Curry?
Okra curry goes well with a variety of dishes. Here are some of the suggestions that you can use together for a delicious meal combo.
- Naan or roti: Indian bread like homemade naan or homemade chapati are a great option to serve alongside Okra Curry. You can also buy them from a store.
- Raita: You can make cucumber raita, onion raita, boondi raita or vegetable raita that you like.
- Papadum: They add a nice crunch and texture to the meal.
- Salad: A light salad like Indian tomato onion salad, kachumber salad or Indian onion salad is also a great option to serve with Okra Curry.
- Pickles: Indian pickles like instant mango pickle, lemon pickle or mixed vegetable pickle are a great way to add some tanginess to the meal.
Storing leftover Bhindi bhaji
Fridge: To store leftover bhindi bhaji in the fridge, let it cool down to room temperature.Transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days. Reheat in a pan on medium heat until heated through, stirring occasionally.
Freezer: For longer storage, you can freeze it. Transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
If you love this recipe, you will also love these popular Indian takeaway recipes
How to make Easy and Authentic Bhindi Bhaji recipe?
- 3 tbsp Oil
- 500 g Okra
- 230 g Red onion diced
- 250 g Tomato diced
- 1 tsp Cumin seeds
- 5 cm Ginger peeled and cut into julienne
- 3 cloves Garlic sliced
- 2 Green chilli chopped
- ¼ tsp Turmeric
- ½- ¾ tsp Red chilli powder
- 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp salt or to taste
- 1 tsp Amchur
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large non-stick pan over medium heat. Once hot add sliced okra and a little salt. Cook for 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally until the slime disappears and okra starts to crisp. Remove cooked okra and set aside.3 tbsp Oil, 500 g Okra, 1 tsp salt or to taste
- In the same pan, heat the remaining oil and add cumin seeds, ginger, garlic and green chilli. Fry for 2-3 minutes.3 tbsp Oil, 5 cm Ginger, 3 cloves Garlic, 2 Green chilli, 1 tsp Cumin seeds
- Add diced onions, saute for 5-6 minutes.230 g Red onion
- Add turmeric, chilli powder, ground coriander, and salt. Stir.¼ tsp Turmeric, ½- ¾ tsp Red chilli powder, 1 ½ tsp ground coriander, 1 tsp salt or to taste
- Add diced tomatoes, cover and cook for 3-4 minutes. Mash the softened tomatoes into the masala.250 g Tomato
- Add cooked okra, toss and cook for 3 minutes.500 g Okra
- Add amchur and lemon juice and toss. Serve hot.1 tsp Amchur, Juice of ½ lemon