Long-time readers of this blog know that I do not do tags and I do have a few that will never see the light of day, unfortunately. Oops! I find them too much work (read thinking) involved.
Well, there is always a first time to everything, so this post is in response to a tag that the Moody Minstrel bestowed upon me. Despite not doing one from him ealier, MM figured this one would get me, and it did. No Q&A. I'll do it.
I am supposed to pick a photo, the fourth photo from the fourth folder of my photo archive and talk about it. And then I am supposed to pass the tag on to four other victims.
What I found is interesting. It is a picture of a vegetable, an unpicked sexy, long cool okra. Over here, we know this vegetable as ladies-fingers, for obvious reasons.
This photo was taken on my recent trip to East Malaysia, in Sibu, to be exact. These plants were in the garden of the home we visited. What was fascinating was that it was the only fruit left behind and it was something like eight inches long, maybe slightly more. I suppose since it has grown to this length, it probably is too old to be eaten and old okras do not taste good and so could have been left behind to adorn the plant. Or it could have been the one and only fruit of the season. Whatever..
Found some interesting things about the okra on Wikipedia. It says the leaves can be eaten too. That is news as over here, we eat only the fruit of the okra. The leaves can be cooked or eaten raw in salads. Okra seeds may be roasted and ground to form a non-caffeinated substitute for coffee. Okra oil is a pressed seed oil, extracted from the seeds of the okra. The greenish yellow edible oil has a pleasant taste and odor, and is high in unsaturated fats.
And oh, okra contains male contraceptive gossypol. Tests have shown that it causes infertility in men and in some countries, acts as an alternative to vasectomy.
There are several ways we cook okra here. I like mine cut in cross-section slices fried in chillies and dried prawns. Another way of cooking okra would be to cook them in water, remove and shred them up with a fork and then fold in fried garlic in soya and oyster sauces and fresh chillies cut up into bits. And who can forget okra in Yong Tau Foo. This is a famous Chinese soup dish with Hakka origins commonly found in Singapore and Malaysia.
Yong tau foo is essentially a clear consomme soup containing a varied selection of food items including fish balls, crab sticks, bittergourds, cuttlefish, lettuce, ladies fingers, as well as chilis, and various forms of fresh produce, seafood and meats common in Chinese cuisine. Some of these items, such as bittergourd and chili, are usually filled with fish paste (surimi). The foods are then sliced into bite-size pieces, cooked briefly in boiling broth and then served either in the broth as soup or with the broth in a separate bowl. The dish is eaten with chopsticks and a soup spoon and can be eaten by itself or with any choice of egg or rice noodles, or bee hoon (rice vermicelli). Another variation of this dish is to serve it with laksa. Essential accompaniments are spicy, vinegary chili sauce, similar to Indonesian sambal oelek, and a distinctive brown sweet noodle sauce or hoisin sauce for dipping.
And now, who shall I tag to keep this going. I tag Mei Teng, Quachee, Foongpc and Furkids in Hong Kong. Looking forward to reading what you'll find in the fourth folder of your photo archive, but of course, you can choose not to do it but I know you will, afterall it is such a fun and no-thinking-required tag. ;)