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Every thing about OKRA | Vahrehvah :

Okra is also known as lady’s finger, ochro or gumbo, is a tall-growing, warm-season, annual vegetable from the same family as hollyhock, rose of Sharon and hibiscus. The name "okra", most often used in the United States and the Philippines, is of West African origin and is cognate with "ọ́kụ̀rụ̀" in Igbo, a language spoken in Nigeria. Okra is a magical vegetable whose texture varies dramatically depending on how it's cooked. It usually grows well in any good garden soil. Shallow cultivation near the plants keeps down weeds. Its flavour is quite subtle, so it benefits from being cooked with strong, spicy ingredients. While buying okra, look for firm, brightly coloured pods. Avoid those that are limp or which have brown marks - they won't be so fresh. The bigger they are, the tougher they are.

Okra is popular in India and Pakistan, where chopped pieces are stir fried with spices known as the okra frypickled, salted or added to gravy-based preparations like Bhindi Ghosht or sambar. In western parts of India (Gujarat, Maharashtra), okra is often stir-fried with some sugar. Okra is also used in Kadhi. Lady’s finger is used to make sambar in Udupi cuisine. In southern India, the okra is cooked in a spicy and tangy tamarind sauce called Vendakai Okra Kozhambu. You can make many dishes with okra like:

  • Bhendi Masala Maharashtrian Style : Bhendi Masala is a traditional Maharashtrian style spicy recipe made with okra that is deep-fried and added to a spicy and tangy spice mix powder, which makes okra delicious, flavourful and mouth-watering. The fried cashew nuts added to this dish enhances the flavours and gives crunchiness to the dish.
  • Kadai Bhendi : This is an awesome dish. It is an amazing mix of fried bhindi with onions, tomatoes, capsicum and spices cooked together.
  • Bharvan Bhindi Okra Lady Finger : Bharvan Bhindi is a simple way of relishing the okra or lady's finger with stuffed spices full of aroma and amazing flavor. It is a lovely side dish with roti or Paratha of choice.
  • Bhindi Kurkuri Crispy Okra : Bhindi Kurkuri or Crispy Okra is an extremely yummy crunchy snack that most of us would love to binge on. It is generally accompanied with rice, dal or chapattis. Bhindi kurkure is a very easy to prepare, innovative and economical dish.
  • Bhendi Jaipuri : Okra fried in rajasthani style. Bhendi Jaipuri is an awesome dish from the Rajasthani cuisine that has rubbles of crispy fried okra, onions and cashew nuts dusted with spices, mango powder (amchur) and besan flour which make it extraordinary.
  • Dragon Dumpling of Okra : Dragon dumpling of okra is a tasty snack recipe. This fried dumpling remains crispy for more than one hour.
  • Bendakaya Pulusu : Bendakaya pulusu recipe An Andhra style ladies finger curry(cooked in tamarind gravy), served with rice.
  • Okra Curd Curry Vendakkai More Kuzhambu : This curry which is most compatible with rice will be popular among all in south India.
  • Cashew Nut Okra : Cashew nut okra is a mouthwatering Indian tea time snack very easy to prepare and tasty.

Health Tips:

  • Okra is low in calories, being a great vegetable for people trying to lose weight, and good for the digestive system.
  • Okra is a powerhouse of soluble fiber in the form of gums and pectins which helps to lower serum cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease.
  • Okra also have a large amount of insoluble fiber which helps to keep the intestinal tract healthy decreasing the risk of some forms of cancer, especially colorectal cancer.
  • Okra contains potassium, vitamin A, B6 and C, folic acid, and calcium. It’s low in calories. Potassium is necessary to maintain proper fluid balance in the body.
  • Okra contains no cholesterol or saturated fat, which are two components that should be avoided when losing weight.
  • Women who are pregnant are urged to incorporate okra into their diets due to the high content of folic acid. Folic acid is essential for the healthy growth of a fetus especially during the fourth week through the twelfth week of pregnancy.
  • okra absorbs so much water, eating this vegetable can prevent constipation, bloating, excess cholesterol, excess bile, and certain toxins.
  • Okra is great to eat during the heat of summer as it helps to treat sun stroke.

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