Crispy Fried Okra

Fried okra photo by bengarland.

Fried okra is a very “southern” southern food, and it’s also a popular Lowcountry recipe. It originated in Africa and was called “kingombo” in Bantu languages, from which we get the word “gumbo.” As I’m sure you know, okra is the main ingredient in the dish known as “gumbo.”

This recipe can be done two ways: as traditional fried okra, or as extra-crispy fried okra. For the crispy version, you’ll need to slice the okra ¼ inch thick. For a more traditional fried okra, slice the pods ½ inch thick.

Holle’s Crispy Fried Okra recipe                          

What you’ll need:

  • 1 – 2 pounds fresh okra
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • ¾  cup self-rising buttermilk cornmeal
  • ¾  cup plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon Lawry’s garlic salt

Directions: Rinse okra. Remove caps and ends. If pods are woody, toss them out. Slice okra either ¼ inch or ½ inch thick and place in a large bowl.

Whisk together milk, egg, and hot sauce and pour over okra.

In a large paper bag, add cornmeal, flour, garlic salt. Shake to mix.

Drop okra in bag a few at a time and shake to coat.

Fry in hot oil, doing so in small batches. For ½-inch okra slices, fry at 350 degrees. For ¼-inch okra, fry at 360 degrees. The oil should be three or four inches deep. I use my Paula Deen Dutch oven for this.

Remove okra from oil when light brown, and drain on a wire rack or on paper towels.