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Archive for the ‘Tricks of the trade’ Category

Freezing Okra


Oftentimes when I go to the Masjed for Taraweeh or to deliver a Halaqa I come home with a bag of Okra. Seems like everybody in Montgomery/AL has an Okra garden, and hence plenty to share. I cut these up into 3 different ways–circles, match stick, and some I just left as whole but cut out the ends. I will be freezing them insha Allah for upcoming dishes. So insha Allah watch out for those dishes soon.

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While you are browsing some of my recipes you will notice that many of them have this ingredient “Bisbas Ahmar Adani” or red chilly sauce [Adeni style]. Every home in Aden has a bottle of this in the refrigerator. I remember days when I would put open the fridge and realize I have run out, and then run down to the neighbors for a little bit to make lunch for that day. It’s absolutely necessary for Adeni cuisine. Some add garlic to the mix, but I don’t like to do that because some recipes don’t require garlic.  If you can’t buy these dried red chilies from Aden, you can find some at your local grocery store in the Mexican section. You’ll find many kinds, but the kind that Adenis use are these:

Alright, so you will need to first cut off the stem to the chili pepper and get the seeks out. It’s okay if you can’t get all of them out, the rest will add some flavor. Then soak the peppers overnight [if you are in a hurry to use you can boil them until they are soft, but know that you are sacrificing flavor]. Then blend into a fine semi paste like sauce. Make sure you blend well, or else you will have pieces of the chili pepper that will get stuck in your throat–it makes for an uncomfortable experience. Store in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator.

Here’s the process in pictures for you:

Cut them with scissors or leave whole

Soak in water

Soaked overnight

Blend well

Done!

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