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Roasted Fresh Okra with Aioli

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Okra with Aioli

Don't fear the 'slime factor' - embrace okra, which can be a crispy and delish summer vegetable.

The arrival of June means we’ve really hit summer. And early summer means farmer’s markets (and maybe your garden?) are filling up with all the tomatoes and strawberries and herbs…and okra.

Roasting okra takes what some consider a sub-par veg (usually citing the slime factor) to a whole new level of crispy deliciousness. Making sure the washed okra is completely dry, then tossing it with olive oil creates charred edges that are salty and peppery and irresistible when dipped in a super simple aioli. You might call roasted okra the shishito pepper’s distant cousin. 

This is the perfect you-can’t-eat-just-one snack of the summer. Just a bit more sophisticated and southern than a bag of chips. And a lot more guilt-free.

Roasted Fresh Okra with Aioli
16 ounces fresh okra
1 tablespoon olive oil
¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup mayonnaise (Duke’s is preferable)
Juice from 1 lemon
1 small clove garlic, crushed with the back of a knife

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Wash the okra, then dry it thoroughly with paper towels. Toss it on a sheet pan with the olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper. Roast the okra for 15 minutes, shaking the pan halfway into the cooking time, until the okra browns in spots. If it hasn’t yet browned to your liking, turn on the broiler and let it brown for a minute or so.

Make the aioli: In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise and lemon juice. Then stir in the garlic clove. Season with ¼ teaspoon kosher salt.

Serve the roasted okra with aioli for dipping.

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