Masala Bhindi: Okra Sans Onions

2 Feb

Masala Bhindi - Okra with Spices

I’m on a run of no onion recipes. This is another such. Masala bhindi (okra) that uses dry spices like cumin and coriander only – no onions, no garlic, no tomatoes.

Masala Bhindi - Okra Sans Onions

I like it when the plate has a range of colors on it. Green, yellow and white – what say?

Masala Bhindi with Rice and Tomato Toor Dal

In the picture above: masala bhindi with rice and tomato toor dal.

You Need:

  • Bhindi (Okra/ladies finger) – 400grams
  • Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Coriander powder – 2 teaspoons
  • Red chili powder – to taste
  • Salt – to taste
  • Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • Hing (asafoetida) – a pinch
  • Oil – 1 tablespoon
  • Fresh coriander leaves – a small bunch, finely chopped

How To Make Masala Bhindi:

Before you cut the okra, wash and pat dry.

To dry the okra: Shake the water off the bhindi and dab well with an absorbent kitchen towel. You might want to do this an hour before you start to cook so that all the water evaporates. You can put it under the fan to quicken the drying. It’s important to have the bhindi completely dry before you cut it, bhindi can turn slimy otherwise.

Cut the okra into 1.5 inch pieces. The knife might turn slimy as you cut. Keep a tissue paper handy to wipe the coating from your knife as needed.

Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Splutter the cumin and add asafoetida, then slide in the cut okra pieces. Cover and cook on medium heat for 5-6 minutes, tossing occasionally. Uncover and cook for another 2 minutes. Mix in the dry spices and cook till the okra turns crisp. A couple of minutes before turning off the heat, mix salt.

Adjust the cooking time depending on the toughness of the okra. Cook a few minutes longer covered if the okra is hard.

Garnish masala bhindi with fresh coriander leaves.

Bhindi Masala - Spiced Okra

To Serve:

Serve masala bhindi on the side with rice/chapatis and dal.

Meal idea: masala bhindi with chapatis and Gujarati dal.

Masala Bhindi, Gujarati Dal, Chapatis


  • Pick okra that is tender, green (no black spots) and when you cut, the seeds are soft and white.
  • Use asafoetida (hing) sparingly if it is a new spice to you. It has a strong taste and it might take a little getting used to. If you do like asafoetida, try other recipes that use this spice: asafoetida gallery.

Masala Bhindi - Okra with Spices

4 Responses to “Masala Bhindi: Okra Sans Onions”

  1. Lakshmi August 19, 2015 at 8:05 PM #


    I just happened to chance upon your blog and simply love it! :)
    Your recipes are so simple they make me want to try them. Please do keep posting; I am definitely going to be a regular visitor!

    – Lakshmi

    • S August 19, 2015 at 9:44 PM #

      Hi Lakshmi. Your feedback made me very happy. Thank you!

  2. Joy Anita Blackshire December 31, 2016 at 4:20 AM #

    Thanks for sharing
    I always need new ideas being a vegetarian

Trackbacks and Pingbacks

  1. Bitter Gourd Fry with Onions | The Steaming Pot - February 28, 2011

    […] this is also a side effect of onion prices diving down from Rs 60/- per kg to Rs 20/- per kg – my no-onion spree is on a break, my kitchen is stacked with onions now and I’m adding the bulb copiously to […]

Leave a Reply