Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Stir-fried Okras, tantalised with a touch of XO Sauce

Okra is a flowering plant in the mallow family Malvaceae, originating somewhere near present-day Ethiopia.

This little creature, also known as Lady's Finger, is highly tantalising. When cooked, it is crunchy and has the same mucilaginous properties as nopales. I instantly fell for it when I first tried. It is most popular with Thai curry. Breaded, deep fried okra is also popular in the Southern United States. Basically, it goes well in many ways.

As usual, I'm gonna give it an entirely new twist. And, of course, it's a minimalist's twist. XO sauce, ginger and garlic - these are all I need. XO sauce is an invention entirely from Hong Kong, the place I'm from. It's made from dried scallops, dried shrimps and chilli. It's getting very popular these days. The Chinese just love it on stir-fry. You can get one easily from supermarkets.

Minimalist's ingredients:
1. a bunch of okras, as many as you like;
2. one or two cloves of garlic, finely chopped, not crushed or pressed;
3. slices of ginger, shredded; and
4. one or half a tea-spoonful of XO sauce.

Each okra should be diagonally sliced into two halves. Small ones should be left unharmed and seeds should be left alone. They are great!

Heat up the pan/wok with drops of extra virgin peanut oil. Let garlic and ginger in first and let them fried for seconds. Toss the okras onto the pan. Swing the pan and swing it well. That's an indispensable part of the stir-fry ritual!

The swing should last for about ½ minute. Sprinkle a pinch of sea-salt and XO sauce. Add a tiny bit of water or broth. Cover with a lid. Turn down the fire slightly and let it cooked for another ½ minute.

Give it another swing and it's done. You'll see that beautfiul green shimmering with garlic, ginger and XO sauce. Here's when your taste buds get thoroughly tantalised!

These little creatures are beautiful and obsessive. I can just have them alone with a favourite beer for my dinner.

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13 Comments:

Blogger GM5 said...

WOW!! I love the pictures.

You gonna try Peninsula's XO sauce. It's great!

10:20 PM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

Peninsula! Peninsula! Can I have a whole carton please?

11:03 PM GMT+8  
Blogger GM5 said...

You may place your order at http://peninsulaboutique.com/products/productdetail.php?depid=4&catid=25&pid=91

12:29 PM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

HK$280!! Kidding me!?

1:26 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous mimi said...

度成點??

9:37 PM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

Not bad. Andy came a long way to do this. I am thoroughly grateful for that!

12:47 AM GMT+8  
Anonymous mimi said...

ok..good..hope he can help

hey..
do u like crysanthemum?

1:02 AM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

Thanks mimi!

What's crysanthemum? Is this flower edible?

2:20 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous mimi said...

kind of edible..but i just use it for decoration.

u can have a look at my flowers at http://mime14.mysinablog.com/

but then, i dunno why i can't give a good shot to the lily..the pinky crysanthemum has very distinctive colour layers and look much better in the pic

they are gorgeous.

8:22 PM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

Thanks mimi, I'll check it out in a second...

That's when you may seriously consider a SLR camera!

12:10 AM GMT+8  
Blogger GM5 said...

Hey, how's the XO sauce?

12:17 AM GMT+8  
Blogger kEV said...

It looks nice even from the outside. I'm gonna use it this weekend. 1/2 will be kept at freezer, just in case.

Thanks GM5!

12:28 PM GMT+8  
Blogger GM5 said...

You gonna make great dishes with the XO sauce for us after I'm back.

1:18 AM GMT+8  

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