The last of the okra

It's kinda like sitting in a sauna then jumping in freezing water. Not that I have ever done that.

By the end of the summer some people may get tired of eating okra all the time, like Katherine. It usually take me a month into fall before I too am okra’d out. So what to do with all the okra still growing in the garden through mid October?

Aside from pickling, a great way to store some okra for winter stews and gumbo is in the freezer and it is really simple to. You will need some quality zip lock bags, a bowl full of ice water and a pot full of boiling water. The boiling water kills any bacteria and softens the skin. The ice water stops the inside from cooking and then turning the okra to mush when thawed out.

Wash and dry the okra then slice the tops off right below the stems. Try not to expose the seeds. In batches, toss the okra into the boiling water and stir them around. Wait 30 seconds then remove with a slotted spoon and dunk in the ice water. Repeat with the rest then dry them off and store in freezer bags. Try and get as much air out of the bags as possible to help reduce freezer burn and the amount of space the bag takes up. You can continue to add more okra to the bag as the weeks continue as well. The okra can also be sliced into rounds before freezing if desired. I prefer to freeze them whole to have more options when they thaw.

About Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

This blog attempts to collect some of the things I try to create with food and booze. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail. My hope is to entertain and maybe help people think a little harder about what they decide to eat and drink.
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38 Responses to The last of the okra

  1. nrhatch says:

    Freezing excess produce is a great way to extend the harvest. Thanks, Greg.

  2. rutheh says:

    Forwarded your post to some okra fans I know. Great photo of the ice and green!
    Perhaps I could develop a taste for okra if you prepared it!

  3. Kristy says:

    Where did you learn all of your gardening, canning, freezing and cooking techniques? You are a wealth of information. 🙂 Seriously though, did you pick this stuff up from your parents, Katherine (because she’s a wealth of info too), or just learn on your own?

  4. My turn to be jealous….I want some of that okra! May have to try next season!

  5. YAY! You get to have okra all the way through fall. Great tips on freezing fresh veg!

  6. Wow, those okras look really healthy 🙂
    On an off-note: I saw a guy on my way to uni. He was on the bus and he looks exactly like you do in the gravatar photo.. Only he’s wearing round glasses. But my gosh, he was like a complete replica, I was amazed! hehe.. 😛 I think he was speaking German, too. 🙂

  7. Nice tip – I’d never thought beyond ‘put in bag and freeze’.

  8. You know by now I;m not a Okra person so I showed this to my mom.. while she was till up and she says she’ll be making Okra tomorrow lol

  9. These look like a great last crop! The green color is so vibrant!

  10. Fabulous picture – although I’m still not a fan of Okra.

  11. niasunset says:

    Dear Greg, in Anatolia they make them dried and string on a line. Then during winter days they cook them. I think you can find if you search on Google, but your process is great too. Thank you, Have a nice weekend, with my love, nia

  12. Tandy says:

    I have never tasted okra! It is not an ingredient you see a lot of here. Have a super weekend 🙂

  13. BrainRants says:

    Okra….. snot filled cartridges… they’re good fried and in gumbo, I’ll give you that.

  14. Michelle says:

    You are a brave gardener! Growing okra drove me crazy — by the time we’d return from the garden to the house, it would have grown too big! I think you could actually watch it grow.

  15. Eva Taylor says:

    I love the beautiful green colour Greg, simply gorgeous! I wish my tomatoes were still producing; I never tire of them.

  16. I remember one aunt’s voice telling me back in my 30’s “Really, G, you must learn to freeze.” I hear her voice again. Thank you for the memory.

  17. Sissi says:

    I wouldn’t have thought of water with ice. Thanks for the tip! Strangely, your very beautiful photo made me want to have a cocktail 😉

  18. We don’t really grow okra up here. I’m not even sure if we could? Either way, I haven’t had much exposure to it. I’ve never seen it in a grocery store, but I have seen it at farmers’ markets. I should buy some next time and try it, I know just where to find the recipes for it. 😉

  19. Am off to London next month and am going to see if I can track down okra seeds!

  20. ceciliag says:

    I am still on the last of the tomatoes, making another batch of sauce today! Tell Katherine I have posted her story! c

  21. ChgoJohn says:

    A great way to preserve a little of Summer’s bounty for the weeks/months ahead. I use this method often, although excess okra doesn’t seem to be a problem around here.

  22. TasteFood says:

    Great storage tips!

  23. crissy says:

    I found these freezer bags on line by accident, I purchased
    a box and they are the best bags ever. The pre-printed info on the
    bag is genius. You have to try them.

    http://dontfahget.com/FreezerBags.html

  24. I agree with Kristey..you are a wealth of information

  25. Charles says:

    Beautiful, and great idea for preserving!

  26. rsmacaalay says:

    Great tip on preserving okra, I will be doing this as they tend to become expensive here if its out of season

  27. I love okra, I definitely try this tip, I love okra because it is a best source of good source of iron and calcium. and it also contains Vit.

  28. I love okra, I definitely try this tip, I love okra because it is a best source of good source of iron and calcium. and it also contains Vit. A and C.

  29. Jake says:

    Hey, wait a minute! Let’s not brush aside the pickling idea so fast! There’s nothing like nice, spicy pickled okra!

  30. My mother always froze okra each year! I love it deep fried and in stews! Thanks for the how-to! Your okra looks a beautiful green!

  31. I froze a bunch of okra this year and still had a little left over from last year. I love it though. It will be great in recipes this winter.

  32. Jessica says:

    Ooh, that photo! Great tip…I usually just throw things in a bag, but will flash freeze things like cookie dough. I guess I usually don’t have an excessive amount of okra sitting around, though!

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