Stewed Okra a la Cubana
Low in calories and packed with nutrients like vitamin C, calcium, and magnesium, Okra is widely used throughout Latin America as a thickener for soups, stews, and drinks. This flavorful Stewed Okra a la Cubana with tomatoes, plantains and green peppers makes a delicious vegetarian side dish.
2 ½ pounds/1,5 kg okra
4 tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
¼ cup grape seed oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, copped
1 1/2/pounds/1,5kg vine-ripened tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
1 ½ teaspoons white vinegar
1 fresh or dried bay leaf
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 yellow plantain, peeled and sliced widthwise
Cut okra in halves lengthwise and place in large bowl. Add lime juice and 1½ teaspoons salt. Let sit 10 minutes to remove mucilage from okra. Rinse under cold water.
Heat oil in medium pot over medium heat. When hot, add onion and sauté until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and stir another minute, then add tomatoes, bell pepper, vinegar, bay leaf, and thyme, and cook 5 minutes.
Add plantain slices, rinsed okra, and 1½ cups water. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer until plantain and okra are tender, about 10 minutes.
Season with salt and serve.
by Angie Martinez and Angelo Sosa