Monday, October 12, 2009

Iron Chef Challenge Week 1: Beer Batter Fried Stuffed Okra with BlueCheeze Horseradish Dipping Sauce

Some Mofoers and I have decided to make it interesting by participating in a little Iron Chef Weekly Challenge. Michelle over at My Zoetrope is hosting the shennanigans on her blog located here For this first week our two ingredients...chosen at random....were Okra and Horseradish. Now I have only ever had okra in gumbo or other stews and there was no way I could imagine getting horseradish in there. The lovely Kittee of Cakemaker to the Stars mentioned a New Orlean's bar that serves Bloody Maries garnished with pickled okra which struck me as about the perfect way to combine these two. The problem is that technically involves no rather than wus out completley I went with the only other Okra prep I could think of that could stand up to horseradish....deep frying. And heck if you are frying why not stuff, use a beer batter and dip it in something funky. The result is the following recipe:

Beer Batter Fried Stuffed Okra with Horseradish Blue Cheeze Dipping Sauce:Take one pound of Fresh Okra and do the following to it:
Stuff It:
Sautee "The Trinity": 1/4 cup chopped onion, 1/8 cup green pepper and 1/8 cup celery until softened and onions are translucent
Add 1/2 cup Chopped Baby Portobello Mushrooms and continue to saute. After mushrooms have released their liquid add 1/2 cup of Whole Wheat Bread crumbs and Salt Free Creole Seasoning to taste. Saute about 3 more minutes
Remove from heat, allow to cool until you can handle the stuffing easily.
Stuff your okra by making a slit in the side and removing any seeds, And replacing with stuffing mixture. Amount of stuffing will depend on the size of your okra. You may have a little stuffing mixture left over depending on your okra's size.

Batter It:
I used a basic beer batter such as found in Vegan Brunch by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I used her recipe subbing Wheat for Dark Beer and adding 1 Tablespoon of salt free Creole Seasoning.

Fry It:
Deep Fry in a about 1 inch of hot vegetable oil 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels or brown paper bags. You can keep it warm in a 200 degree oven until ready to serve.
Dip It:
I added Horseradish and Veganaise to my basic Blue Cheeze Dressing recipe resulting the following:
6 oz Silken Tofu
1/8 cup Almond Milk
1/8 Cup Rice Wine Vinegar
Small Clove of Garlic Minced
2 Tbs Preserved Bean curd
1/8 cup Vegan Mayo
2 Tbs Prepared Horseradish (or to taste)
1/4 tsp salt
Pinch of white Pepper
Blend all ingredients until smooth. Taste for Horseradish amount as prepared horseradish strength can vary greatly by brand. I use Gold's which is wonderfully bitey. Serve Along side your fried okra.

Eat and Enjoy!

I found this challenge fun and the results pretty good for snacking during the ball games. Next week our ingredients are Lemon and Ginger. The wheels are starting to turn...

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