Many of you will know this dish as okra, or ‘bamya’. However, the vegetable is also known as ‘ladies fingers’ which when you look closely is easy to see why! This makes a perfect SPOOKY dish for all your little ones this Halloween, or in fact any time of year.
Additionally, it is packed full of good stuff, making it great for children and pregnant women too.
Growing up this was frequently served during family banquets in our house and is a dish I’ve come to love.
It’s big in Europe and has a whole host of healthy traits, yet is somehow underrated here in the UK.
In a bid to get my non-compromising toddler to try and eat a more varied diet, this is a dish I cook every now and then. If your child is anything like mine, then constipation seems to be a frequent theme, and this is a great dish to help keep them regular.
Good for Mums-to-be too
Okra health benefits are many. For starters it’s low in calories but high in fibre – hence helping to keep the little ones regular.
It’s also loaded with vitamins A, B and C and other goodness including beta carotene and folic acid (important during pregnancy).
It has been suggested that it can also help manage blood sugar levels in some diabetes, including gestational diabetes – so it could be a great dish for Mothers-to-be as well.
My go to recipe
This delicious roasted tomato dish is one I’ve adapted from my travels to Cyprus, where they eat it in the gallons! It can be enjoyed as a main, or a side dish. Best of all, it doesn’t take much effort!
The dish below is enough for a main for two, or a side for a small family
- Ground salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- A packet of okra
- A can of chopped tomatoes (400g)
- 5 x tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- One large sweet onion
- 2-3 cloves of garlic (chopped or minced)
- Squeeze of lemon
An hour before cooking:
Chop the stems off the okra at an angle so the seeds don’t come out and place in a bowl
Cover in vinegar and leave for an hour in tin foil.
Ready to cook:
Drain and rinse the okra. Meanwhile in a medium size pan heath the olive oil and combine garlic and onion until they start to colour, at which point add the okra and stir.
Now add the can of tomatoes with salt and pepper. You can add water if you want, the consistency should be juicy, a bit like a stew.
Simmer on a low heat for approximately 35-45 minutes. The okra will look soft and the sauce will be stew like. Do as the Greeks and squeeze a lemon and serve.
There you go, your very own nutritious spooky surprise!
Okra goes beautifully with lamb, why not check out the recipe below…