Delicious okra like you’ve never tasted it before! This flavorful Mexican style okra is cooked with basic ingredients of Mexican cooking. This dish is a yummy vegan appetizer or side dish.
What Does “A La Mexicana” Mean
This term simply means Mexican-style. Typically it refers to food cooked with 3 basic ingredients of Mexican cooking. The ingredients are green chile, onion and tomato.
See where that’s going?
These three colors are the colors of the Mexican flag. So when a dish is cooked with them it makes it “a la mexicana”. In this case okra Mexican style.
Of course, white onion is what typically is used when a dish is made “Mexican-style”. As you can see here I ended up using purple onion — yes, I’m aware it’s no longer the flag colors. But the spirit of the style is still there. You can of course use white onion instead.
Is Okra Commonly Used in Mexican Cooking
No, okra isn’t a common ingredient in Mexican cooking. It does pop up here and there throughout Mexican regions. I believe it’s more common in the Northern Mexican states.
If you do see it in Mexico it’ll be called ocra or quimbombó.
I’ve actually only ever seen okra at the grocery store, either fresh or frozen. I’ve never seen it at market, restaurant and certainly didn’t eat it as a child.
Okra is something I became familiar with only after moving to the US. There I only tasted it in gumbo — but I loved it!
When I saw it at the grocery store I had to buy it and knew immediately that I’d be cooking it “a la Mexicana”.
Health Benefits of Okra
Okra, like so many other veggies, is super healthy. Definitely eat it when you get the chance to. Below are some of the many reasons why.
- Okra is full of dietary fiber. This means it’s great for your digestive tract and will also keep you feeling full longer.
- Okra is a low-calorie food. Great for those watching their weight.
- Said to control blood sugar, keep healthy cholesterol, and great for our kidneys.
- Boosts your immune system
- Believed to be great for hair, brain, joints, eyes, and skin health.
And so many more great reasons to add add okra to our diets.
Mexican Style Okra (Ocra a la Mexicana)
- 1.5 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup red or white onion finely chopped
- teaspoon salt
- 4 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 large jalapeno chopped
- 2 cups sliced fresh okra*
- 1 large Roma tomato chopped
- Have all of the ingredients ready to go. Heat the oil in a large pan and once hot add the onion, saute until soft. Then add salt then the garlic and cook another minute before adding the jalapeno and sauteing for another couple of minutes. Next, add the okra slices and cook until the okra begins to release it’s viscous liquid and also soften. Lastly, add the chopped tomato bits and saute until they have broken down and okra is completely soft and tender.
- Serve with corn chips as an appetizer or as a side dish.
This simple recipe for okra a la Mexicana is a must-try! You can serve it with some baked or fried corn chips for a scrumptious vegan snack or as a side dish. Or better yet you can double the ingredients and serve this with rice and beans for a very filling and healthy Mexican vegan meal.
Enjoy amigos and do let me know if you give it a try.