Shamil grew up resisting okra – he never got past the slimy texture. However, Naved’s recipe has since convinced him, and many other lifelong okra-avoiders. These little snacks are crispy, light and deliciously addictive. They are even better when dipped into a chutney. The bowl will be empty before you know it.
- 175g okra
- 4g garlic paste
- 4g ginger paste
- ¼ tsp deggi mirch chilli powder
- Vegetable oil for deep-frying
- 15g chickpea (gram) flour
- 10g cornflour
- ½ tsp “magic” masala (see below)
- For the “magic” masala
- 10g fine sea salt
- 10g amchur (dried mango powder)
- 4g deggi mirch chilli powder
Mix the “magic” masala ingredients together in a bowl. Store excess in an airtight container or jar in a dark cupboard – it will keep for up to 2 months.
Wash the okra under cold water and pat dry completely with kitchen paper. Take off and discard the top of each okra, leaving the tail intact. Slice in half lengthways.
Mix together the garlic and ginger pastes, chilli powder and 4 tsp water. Add the okra halves and mix well to ensure they are well coated.
Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or other suitable deep, heavy-based pan to 180°C.
Mix the two flours together. Sprinkle over the okra and toss very gently to coat.
Fry the okra in the hot oil, in batches if necessary, until golden and crispy, about 4–5 minutes. Drain on kitchen paper, sprinkle with “magic” masala and serve immediately, with your choice of chutneys(s).
Dishoom by Shamil Thakrar, Kavi Thakrar and Naved Nasir, Bloomsbury Publishing, £26. Photographer: Haarala Hamilton