Archives for: November 2005, 01
I took a speech class in high school. A boy in the class rarely put much effort into his speeches, but he made one presentation, which will be forever remembered by everyone who heard it. He described okra. Among other things he spoke of its "umbilical chord of slime."
My daughter likes raw vegetables, so she probably wouldn't eat okra even if it wasn't slimy. My husband will eat okra in a gumbo or a stew, but he does not like okra alone. Sometimes when I've fixed a grain dish or pinto beans for the As, I eat okra for dinner. When I do, I get raised eyebrows from the family, because my favorite way to eat okra violates all decent rules for table manners.
I am not a prim "Mabel, Mabel, if you're able, get your elbows off the table" kind of a mom, but I do have certain minimum standards. Some of my son's friends learned that they were not allowed to fully express their creativity with grapes and carrot sticks when they were at my house.
My daughter thinks I might owe those friends apologies because of the way I eat okra. For that reason I usually eat okra by myself at lunch, as I am doing today.
I melt butter in the bottom of a sauce pan. If I am cooking fresh okra, I add a tiny bit of water. If I am cooking frozen okra, I add no water at all. I always cook whole okra, never sliced or chopped.
I have some miniature baking dishes, the kind you could use to serve a dip or to bake custard. I put olive oil and salt in one of the dishes. I pick the okra up by the stem end, dip it in the olive oil, and bite it off of the stem. I think it is delicious hot or cold.
I suppose for dinner I could cut the okra into bite size pieces and dip it in the olive oil with a fork, but I like okra as a finger food.