I have a funny story to share today. Now, back in India we always knew Bhindi is called as Lady Finger-that is what we were taught in schools-right? After coming to the UK, one day I asked a grocery vendor if he has got some lady fingers in his shop. He quickly went inside and got me a pack of finger cakes (also known as finger sponges, mainly used in tiramisu). I was shocked and embarrassed at the same time, I did not know how to react at all, and thus I purchased that cake pack :-). I came back home and quickly searched on internet-it was then I came to know that bindhi is actually known as Okra ;)
From simple stir fried okra subji to exotic Bhindi Do Pyaza you can do so much with this humble vegetable. I have made oven roasted Bhindi also and if you fancy something marwadi then check Bharwa (stuffed) Bhindi recipe. Today, I gave okra a pickled taste.
Achari Bhindi Pyaz is robust of flavours. Easy but would give an impression that you have taken lot of efforts. Achari massala is dry roasted spice powder made by grinding the spices that are used in making pickle. Then, you need to use mustard oil (sarso ka tel) to bring that sour and authentic achari taste. I have seen people using yogurt (dahi/curd) in this recipe but I feel that it makes it very mushy and I personally don’t recommend it.
For me, Achari Bhindi Pyaz should be dry, coated with pickle massala and should have a bit of tanginess in the end. This is surely a crowd pleaser recipe.
For Achari Massala
1/2 teaspoon fenurgreek seeds/methi dana
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds/saunf
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds/dhaniya
1/2 teaspoon onion seeds/kalonji
1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds/rai
250 grams okra/Bhindi
1-2 green chillies
2 tablespoons mustard oil/sarso tel
Salt to taste
1/4 teaspoon turmeric/haldi
1/2 teaspoon coriander powder/dhaniya powder
1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder/lal mirchi
1/2 teaspoon dry mango powder/amchur
For Achari Massala
On a low flame dry roast the ingredients till you smell good aroma. Approximately it takes 5-8 minutes.
Chop Bhindi and pyaz lengthwise.
Heat oil in a kadai. When oil gets hot, add bhindi and pyaz.
Reduce the heat to low. Mix in salt and turmeric. Cover and let it cook for 8-10 minutes or till bhindi is half done.
Add in 1/2 teaspoon achari massala, coriander powder, red chilli powder and green chillies. Cover and cook again for 5 minutes.
Add in amchur powder. Mix. Cover and turn off the flame/heat.
Recently when my parents visited us my mother got me homemade achari massala and I used the same in this recipe. If you want a quick fix then I highly recommend using MDH Achari Massla which is easily available in Indian grocery stores.
Feel free to use some other oil as well, but mustard oil does bring the authentic pickle taste.
Make sure that okras are washed and dried well before using.