In response to the high demand for my quick Okra soup, here is a recipe to tingle your taste buds.
500g Chopped Okra
1 litre Chicken stock / Vegetable stock
2 medium sized onions
I teaspoon of coconut oil or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon of cumin
1 whole Habanero/ Scotch Bonnet Chilli
30g of peeled ginger
1 smoked chipotle chilli (optional)
1 large bag of fresh spinach
2 large diced sun-ripened tomatoes
1 teaspoon of Bicarbonate of Soda (optional )
The exciting thing about this dish is, you can create a variation with different flavours by using the following or combining them ( an indulgent act).
Seafood medley ( Prawns, Crabs, mussels)
Mixed fish or Fish balls ( smoked fish, fresh fish, fried fish)
Meat or meat balls (Goat,Lamb,Beef)
Poultry ( smoked Turkey, Chicken, Guinea Fowl, Duck, Pheasant )
For a vegetarian option you can add Cauliflower and Aubergine.
Blend together the ginger, 1 whole onion and cumin. Add a bit of water and blend to a silky smooth consistency.
In a saucepan on a medium heat add the oil till it's warm. Add the cumin and ginger mix and cook slowly for about 8 minutes or until you have a a thick paste. (The reason I slow cook the the mix is, the onion caramelises which lends it's sweetness to the dish. It's all about flavour remember)
Using another saucepan on a medium heat warm your preferred stock and add the chopped okra.
Add the bicarbonate of soda which activates the Okra's mucilage. This is optional, as some prefer the soup without it's slimy characteristic.
Cook for 2 minutes then add your cumin and ginger paste.
Cut your medium sized onions in two and slice sideways and add to the okra mix.
I used prawns and left over cooked meatballs for this recipe. I added the raw prawns (cooked for 2 minutes) and then added the meat balls.
Add the chipotle (for a smoky flavour) and salt to taste.
Cook for a further 3 minutes and turn the heat off.
Add the chopped tomatoes and spinach. Cover the soup to allow the spinach to wilt and the flavours to infuse for 5 minutes.
Voila your Okra Soup is ready. Best eaten with Banku ( steamed corn and cassava dumpling , rice, yam)
Traditionally Palm oil is used for a rather earthy taste. When cooking with Palm oil it's best to use smoked fish or meat, for poultry and seafood it's best to use vegetable oil, coconut oil or unrefined Shea butter.
Okra soup cooked with Palm oil (Made by my Mum)