Okra

okra.JPG

Photo attribution: 

Wikimedia Commons

sliced okra.JPG

Photo attribution: 

Wikimedia Commons

okra plant.jpg

Photo attribution: 

Flickr: faul

Foods Included

Okra

Description

Okra is a green edible seed pod that has a fuzzy texture on its skin. It is traditionally used in Gumbo to help thicken the soup.

Buy It

  • Choose bright green okra that is firm.
  • Avoid okra that is moldy, limp, or dried out.

Store It

  • Keep okra in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
  • Before cooking okra, wash with cold water.

Cook It

  • Stovetop: Rinse okra and drain well. Bring a small amount of water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the okra and cover. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until tender. Drain okra  and season with salt and pepper.
  • Microwave: Put rinsed okra in a microwave-safe dish with 2 tablespoons of water. Cover and microwave on HIGH for 4-6 minutes or until tender. Drain well and season with salt and pepper.
  • To prevent okra from becoming slimy, you can add vinegar or other acidic ingredients (like tomatoes) while cooking.
  • Okra can be used as a substitute for zucchini in dishes.
  • Okra tastes great in curries, sautés, and soups.

Why It's Great

  • Vitamin A keeps our eyes working, our immune system strong, and our cells growing.
  • B Vitamins helps our cells grow and stay healthy.
  • Vitamin C keeps our immune system strong and helps our bodies heal quickly.
  • Vitamin K helps our bodies heal quickly.
  • Fiber helps with healthy digestion and keeps us feeling full.  Eating enough fiber has been shown to keep our hearts healthy too.
  • Folate, or folic acid, helps our tissues grow and our cells work.  Especially important for pregnant women.

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