Stewed Okra and Tomatoes

  • Yield servings

This classic New Orleans dish combines okra and tomatoes to bring out the best flavors of each.

Ditte Isager


6 large handfuls fresh small okra
2 tablespoons baking soda
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 large tomatoes, peeled and diced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon sugar
1 sprig fresh oregano leaves, chopped
1 sprig fresh basil leaves, chopped
freshly ground black pepper
4 cups cooked white rice


  1. Bring a gallon of water to a boil in a large pot. Add the okra, baking soda, and 2 tablespoons salt. Cook the okra at a hard boil for 5 minutes. Strain the okra and plunge it into a large bowl of ice water. Once it’s cool, drain the okra and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until warm, then add the tomatoes and garlic and cook for several minutes. Add the pepper flakes and sugar and cook for 10 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the oregano, basil, and okra, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes.
  3. Season the stew with salt and pepper. Serve with hot rice.

Reprinted with permission from My New Orleans by John Besh, Andrews McMeel Publishing



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