This is a recipe I remember eating a lot of during my first real relationship. My ex-girlfriend’s mother cooked this all the time and with a bit of effort I managed to replicate her recipe. I don’t eat a lot of vegetables but I like certain ones and this one is a hit. :)
Ladyfingers or okra is quite easy to work with – my parents usually just dunk it in hot water for a couple of minutes and eat it just like that. It’s very healthy.
However, this is a better tasting version that I picked up from an ex-girlfriend’s mom (who’s a great cook). It requires:
Lady’s fingers (okra)
Surimi (crab sticks)
Dark soy sauce
What makes this slightly different is all in the sauce. This sauce is very delicious when used with lady’s fingers. You’ll want to mix tomato sauce and dark soy sauce in a 1:1 ratio. Pour another measure of brown sugar (2:1 to the existing sauce mix) on top to sweeten the entire thing.
Surimi is meant to be the “treasure” beneath the bed of ladyfingers. Put it into boiling water and take it out after a few seconds. Surimi (crab sticks) cooks really fast so get ready to fish it out when it floats to the top (to me this means that it’s cooked, I could be mistaken). ;)
Put the lady fingers into the boiling pot after that and wait for about 2 minutes. A spatula would be useful in speed cooking – just press the okra down into the hot water. Ladyfingers also doesn’t take long to cook – you want this to be slightly firm and crunchy on the outside.
While the ladyfingers are cooking, put a bit of hot water into the sauce mixture to melt the brown sugar. I just used the closest available one – straight from the pot. You just need a TINY (a bit of an oxymoron to use caps to emphasize moderation) amount so just sprinkle a little from the spatula you use for the lady fingers.
Take the lady fingers out, chop off the head, and slice it vertically using a very sharp knife – two slices down each one is optimal but if you come across a particularly small finger, just once slice would do. This releases the Gooey Stuff (TM) that’s so good about okra.
Just arrange the sliced lady fingers on top of the bed of surimi and pour the sauce over it. It’s now ready to eat! :D
This dish cools really fast so it’s best if you cook it last.
Serve immediately and savor the texture and tastes of the messy goo mixed with sauce and surimi and the occasional crunch of lady’s fingers. :)