The Parsi folks’ love for eggs – cooked and raw, is well-known.
You’ll find interesting Parsi ‘egg tales’ in my posts for Potato and Pea Frittata…The Parsi Way and Tangy Spiced Tomato Egg Tart…Delicious Twist on a Parsi Special.
This recipe for stove-top okra frittata is yet another classic Parsi-style take on eggs as a meal option; better known in Parsi circles as ‘Bhinda per Eedu’ translating to ‘eggs on okra.’
One of my childhood favorites, mom prepared this dish at least once a week for dinner, by popular demand.
It’s really quite a simple recipe, a lot like the people who’ve created it.
Okra or ladyfingers (Bhindi is the Indian word for okra) are cooked well, Parsi-style, in Indian spices and aromatics.
Right before the dish is served, the cooked okra is topped with a generous layer of seasoned and well-beaten eggs. In its traditional form, whole sunny-side-up eggs are layered over the cooked vegetable, for a heartier serving.
Okra frittata with wholesome vegetables and protein, makes a great weekday family meal, best served with Indian bread like chapati or regular dinner rolls.
Offering an interesting twist to frittata – a classic brunch dish, I also like to serve this okra preparation for brunch, which invariably leads to interesting food conversations around the table.
- 1 lb okra or ladyfingers or Bhindi, cut in 1 inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
- ½ cup finely chopped red onion
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped Thai or Serrano green chili pepper (optional, for a spice kick)
- 2 teaspoons ginger garlic paste (or 1 teaspoon each, minced garlic and ginger)
- 1 teaspoon ground red chili pepper or Cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- ½ cup finely chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon white refined sugar
- ½ teaspoon Garam Masala (optional)
- 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 4 eggs
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ¼ teaspoon each ground nutmeg, salt and cracked black pepper
- Heat canola oil in a sauté pan. Add cumin seeds, chopped onion and green chili pepper (if using) to the oil. Brown the onion for a couple of minutes.
- Stir in the ginger garlic paste, red chili, coriander and salt. Let the spices cook together for 3-4 minutes, adding only a drop or two of water if they stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Next, add the cut okra and stir gently; reduce the flame to medium-low, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, till they soften.
- Then, mix in the chopped tomatoes, sugar and Garam Masala (if using), and cook covered on a medium-low flame, for another 5-7 minutes.
- While the okra cooks, in a separate bowl - beat the eggs, milk, nutmeg, salt and cracked black pepper till they are well-blended.
- Use the back of your spoon to even out the cooked okra in the pan, so that you have a flat base to layer the eggs. Reduce the flame to low.
- Spread a layer of the seasoned eggs over the okra mixture in the pan. Great Idea: Sometimes, I like to crack whole eggs, sunny-side-up, over the okra to create a more wholesome meal. If you plan to try this technique, don’t add milk, and season the eggs with salt and black pepper after they’ve been cracked over the vegetable.
- Cover and let the eggs cook through on a low flame for about 10 minutes, till they are done. Leave covered till ready to serve. Tip: Cooking the eggs on a low flame is important, so that the okra doesn’t burn at the bottom of the pan.
- Serve the frittata as a weekday meal with bread of choice. Alternately, okra frittata makes an interesting brunch serving.