During this pandemic as I have been cooking more, I began supporting a local organic farm in Hong Kong. It reminds me of my old days in Boston when I used to receive gorgeous bounties of produce every week from Siena Farms, a local farm that practiced sustainable and organic methods. This Hong Kong farm is located in one of Hong Kong’s land areas preserved for farming. It’s been a joy to receive weekly deliveries of local, organic produce again.
I’ve always enjoyed farm shares because they give me incentive to try cooking vegetables I’ve never cooked before. In Boston these farm shares exposed me to things like French breakfast radish, rutabaga, celeriac, watermelon radish, garlic scapes, and much, much more.
Recently my Hong Kong organic farm started to grow okra. I’ve usually had okra either in a gumbo (where it’s sticky, gooey, and soft) or deep fried Southern style. Here in Asia, I learned that you could quickly char okra and then quickly stir fry with your favorite meat.
The end result is much less gooey and sticky, and almost reminds me a bit of blistered Shishito peppers (though they still do have a bit of gooeyness inside).
All in all, I found it to be a lovely way to prepare okra, and I ended up only cooking it this way throughout the whole okra season.
1. Cut okra in half, split down the middle
2. Add about 1 tablespoon of high heat oil (e.g., grapeseed, avocado oil), and heat until pan is very hot
3. Lay okra flat side down onto the pan in a single layer, being careful not to crowd the pan
4. Wait 2-3 min until the flat side is bit charred, and flip.
If you want, you can just sprinkle some sea salt on top and call it a day. However, if you want you make it into a stir fry with meat, you can remove the okra from the pan and cook the meat separately, combining both at the end.
In my case, I simple cut up some pork loin and quickly stir fried the meat with ~1 tsp of oil over high heat to char the outside and cook the inside. After a couple minutes, I combined the cooked meat together with the okra I had set aside and just tossed both together.