Okra in ponzu sauce

okra in ponzu

Did you ever have that one vegetable you sincerely hated?

I hated okra with every slimy fibre of its being. This was one of my mom’s favorite veggies and on a night when we didn’t prepare much food, she always had some form of boiled okra on our table. As a kid, I did not enjoy its mushy slimy texture. Even when I was hooked on natto, I just could not seem to love okra. It was bland, mushy, and unnecessarily slimy. It wasn’t until I tasted the okra at my friend’s house that I realised that our family had misunderstood okra. My friend’s okra in ponzu was a fresh and simple dish that brightened even the slimiest lady finger.

Since I felt okra was the most dubious of vegetables, I had my hesitations when my friend Y placed a bowl of okra on our dinner table. Y’s family has been my source of home-cooked Japanese dishes and never did I ever have a bad dish in their home. However, okra. OKRA!?! I didn’t even think okra was in the Japanese menu! I asked Y about the okra and she was quite enthusiastic about it. She noticed my raised brow yet she assured me that this okra tastes great and that her sister C had an awesome technique to make this okra work. Hence, I placed my doubts aside and gave that okra a shot. I guess, the rest is history.


Okra’s a luxury here in Australia. It’s regularly at 13AUD/kilo which is roughly 600PHP which is crazy since we pay 40PHP or 1.5 AUD for kilo! So when I see fresh okra at a much lower price (I usually buy when it’s below 10 AUD), I buy a few and cook this refreshing okra dish.

Okra in ponzu sauce
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  1. 10 fingers of okra
  2. 1 stalk of spring onion, finely sliced
  3. 2-3 tbsp of ponzu sauce
  4. a pinch of grated ginger
  1. Boil water and place the clean whole okra for one minute or until the skin becomes a deeper shade of green. I usually sing twinkle twinkle little star twice before I take it off the heat.
  2. Drain the okra and immediately steep it in cold water. Cool it until it's mildly colder than your hand.
  3. Slice the top off the okra and cut it into 1 cm thick rings
  4. In a bowl, mix the ponzu, ginger, okra, and spring onion.
  5. Serve at room temperature or cold
  1. This keeps in the fridge for 2-4 days. It's a great side for bento!

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