Skillet-Roasted Spiced Okra

Even if you think you don’t like okra, please stay with me because I can pretty much guarantee this is not like the okra you’ve had before. When my friend Jennifer told me that this recipe was in a recent issue of Food & Wine mag, I was ecstatic! Actually, if you didn’t know me, you might have thought I was certifiably insane with the crazy smile that was plastered on my face.

Did you read my Atlanta post on Woodfire Grill? Do you remember Kevin Gillespie’s okra dish that was the best part of that meal? Do you remember that I said I would make that dish, even adding, “mark my words”? Well, here it is! It’s not exactly like what I had in Atlanta, but it was still pretty darn awesome. Warm and spicy. Crispy, not slimy.

Unfortunately, the suggested accompaniment was a complete and utter disaster. I followed the recipe instructions to the letter, but what resulted was, to me, nearly inedible. So take my advice- do not make the lentils in herb-arugula yogurt that Food & Wine suggests!

Next time I’ll try to get closer to the original Woodfire dish by serving the okra over local butter beans and french horn mushrooms with some crispy shallots on top. That would be perfection!

Skillet-Roasted Spiced Okra

Adapted from Food & Wine magazine, Kevin Gillespie


3/4 tsp hot paprika

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/4 tsp ground coriander

1/8 tsp turmeric

Pinch of cinnamon

4 tsp vegetable oil*, separated

1 lb small okra, halved lengthwise



In a small bowl, blend the paprika with the cumin, coriander, turmeric, and cinnamon.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat 2 tsp of the oil. Add 1/2 the okra, cut side down, and cook over high heat for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to moderate and cook until browned on the bottom, 4 minutes longer. Turn the okra and cook over low heat until tender, 2 minutes. Season with salt and sprinkle with 1/2 the spice mixture. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Remove from skillet and place on serving platter. Repeat all steps using the remaining 2 tsp oil, 1/2 the okra, and 1/2 the spices.

Drizzle the lemon juice over the okra and serve.

*the original recipe called for 2 Tbsp of oil, but my friend tested out the dish before I did and advised that it was a bit too oily for her, so I reduced the amount I used

Woodfire Grill’s Spice Roasted Okra
local butter beans and french horn mushrooms,
green bean salad, crisp fried shallots