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Bharwa Bhindi / Stuffed Okra – Stove Top, Air Fryer

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Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra) is a popular Indian side dish. This spicy, tangy, lip smacking dish, is prepared by stuffing okra with a unique blend of spices and cooked to perfection. This dish is typically served with some Indian flatbread such as roti, paratha or naan. This dish is VEGAN, GLUTEN-FREE, PALEO and LOW-CARB recipe.

 

 

Growing up in India, I remember my mom used to make okra (bhindi), few times a week. She used to make bhindi fry, masala bhindi, bhindi aloo, bharwa bhindi and so many other dishes. We all used to enjoy it a lot. It was one of the quickest, and the easiest weeknights dinner, making okra (bhindi). Serve it with some roti, paratha or with some kadhi khichdi. YUM!!!

Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra ), this recipe is all about stuffing. You can use any kind of stuffing you like. I have shared different ways to make the stuffing, please refer to the post later – VARIATIONS TO STUFFED OKRA (BHARWAN BHINDI). Be generous with the stuffing, since all the flavors in this dish mainly come from the stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala).

I will be making this Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra) using my family’s favorite stuffing recipe. Simple, flavorful, lip-smacking Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra). I will be sharing the traditional, Stove Top version as well as Air Fryer version. Enjoy with some roti, naan, paratha or with some kadhi khichdi.

 

WHAT IS BHARWA MASALA (STUFFING MIX)

Bharwa Masala is a unique blend of several Indian spices, mixed together and used as a stuffing in many of the dishes such as Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra), Bharwa Baingan (Stuffed Eggplant), Bharwa Aloo (Stuffed Potatoes), Bharwa Mirch (Stuffed Chili Pepper), etc.

There are many variations to this simple Bharwa Masala. Depending upon what part of India, the stuffing mix will have some of it’s flavor. For example, In Gujarat, people like to add some fresh cilantro and some jaggery to their stuffing. In Maharashtra, stuffing is prepared using freshly grated coconut and/or crushed peanuts. North Indians like to add Garam Masala, wheres some also prefer chickpeas flour (besan) in the stuffing.

Today, I will share my family’s favorite stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala) recipe. Simple, flavorful and one of my family recipes. I learned this recipe from my grandma, she was an excellent cook, very kind, and a compassionate person. She loved to cook for her family.

STUFFING FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

There are many ways to prepare the stuffing. You can make stuffing at home, or even buy a ready made stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala), easily available in most Indian/Asian supermarkets.

This homemade stuffing recipe is by far the easiest and most delicious recipe, which can be used in many of the Indian dishes, that call for the stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala).

One of the reasons I love to make my own stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala) is that, I have full control over the spices. I can add spices to my liking. And that is the best part of it.

I take some coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, red chili powder and dried mango powder. Mix all the dry spices, and store it in an air-tight glass container. This stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala) has a long shelf life. I just use the stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala), whenever I am making a stuffed (Bharwa) dish.

 

 

 

RECIPE FOR HOMEMADE BHARWA MASALA (STUFFING MIX)

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons CORIANDER POWDER
2 teaspoons CUMIN POWDER
1 teaspoons   TURMERIC POWDER
2 teaspoons DRY MANGO POWDER(amchur), adjust to taste
2 teaspoons  RED CHILI POWDER, adjust to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

Mix all the spices together with the spoon. Store it an air-tight glass jar. Use it as required.
This stuffing mix (bharwa masala) has a long shelf life.
Note: You can adjust the spiciness by adding more or less red chili powder. You can adjust tanginess by adding more or less dried mango powder.

VARIATIONS FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

For the variation for Bharwa Bhindi (stuffed okra), you can add different flavors to the basic stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala), such as:

GARLIC STUFFED OKRA – you can use fresh garlic (minced or crushed), or garlic powder

PEANUTS STUFFED OKRA – handful of crushed peanuts, add to the basic mix and use it as stuffing.

COCONUT STUFFED OKRA – freshly grated or dry desiccated coconut can be added to the stuffing mix.

ROASTED CHICKPEAS FLOUR (BESAN) – roast around 2 tablespoons of chickpeas flour (besan), mix it with the basic stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala) and use it as a stuffing.

You can use one or a combination of these ingredients for the stuffing. Like:

ROASTED CHICKPEAS FLOUR (BESAN) & GARLIC
ROASTED CHICKPEAS FLOUR (BESAN), GARLIC & PEANUTS
ROASTED CHICKPEAS FLOUR (BESAN) & COCONUT

RECIPE VIDEO – STOVE TOP BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

STEP BY STEP RECIPE FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

Bharwa Bhindi (Stuffed Okra), simple, easy to make, with just one veggie and few spices, you can make a lip smacking dish in no time.

STEP 1: Wash the okra. Spread okra on a clean kitchen towel and pat dry to absorb any extra moisture.

STEP 2: Cut the top of the okra. Make a vertical (lengthwise) slit on each okra, be careful not to cut the okra in half. It will still be intact on the other side.

 

 

 

 

STEP 3: Prepare the stuffing for the okra. Take a bowl, add all the dry spices – coriander powder, cumin powder, dried mango powder (amchur), red chili powder, turmeric and salt to taste. Mix all the spices until well combined.

 

 

STEP 4: Take a okra and stuff it generously with the prepared stuffing (masala). Repeat the process with the remaining okras. Keep it aside. Save any leftover stuffing (masala) for later use.

 

INSTRUCTIONS FOR STOVE TOP BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

STEP 1: Heat a kadai / wok / frying pan. Add couple of tablespoons of oil. When oil is hot, add a pinch of asafoetida.

STEP 2: Carefully, slide all the stuffed okra onto the frying pan. Add all the leftover stuffing(masala). Let the okra sear for 30-60 seconds on a high heat.

STEP 3: Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook. Gently, stir the okra every couple of minutes, until the okra is tender and cooked.
It takes around 8-10 minutes for okra to be cooked.

STEP 4: Dish out okra in a serving dish. Garnish with some fresh cilantro and some freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional). Serve stuffed okra with some Indian flatbread – roti, naan, paratha. Enjoy!

 

 

 

RECIPE VIDEO – AIR FRYER BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)


 

INSTRUCTIONS FOR AIR FRYER BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

STEP 1: Spray the air fryer basket with some cooking oil. 

STEP 2: Place the stuffed okra in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Spray okra with some cooking oil.

STEP 3: Air fry okra at 350F for 10 minutes. Remove the basket and check for the doneness of okra. Note: Different air fryer have different temperature settings. Add 1 to 2 minutes of cooking time if required.

STEP 4: Repeat the process for the remaining okra.

STEP 5: Dish out okra in a serving dish. Garnish with some fresh cilantro and some freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional). Serve stuffed okra with some Indian flatbread – roti, naan, paratha. Enjoy!

 

 

 

HOW TO PICK OKRA FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

Okra comes in many sizes. From long, slender to short and thick. When it comes to picking okra, I look for fresh, young okra that is bright in green color and has no black or brown spots. I prefer short or medium and thick okra. These are usually the best kind. They are not woody and also have smaller seeds as compared to the long, slender okra.

Young okra is around 2-3 inches tall, wheres mature okra is more than 3 inches tall. Look for young okra, it tastes great and has smaller seeds too. Fresh okra stays good for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. 

PRO TIPS FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

The star ingredient of this recipe is Okra, pick the freshest, young okra for best results. See the post earlier for – HOW TO PICK OKRA FOR BHARWA BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)

It is important to completely dry the okra before using. Moisture in okra makes it slimy. You can let the okra air dry for 15-30 minutes in a colander or pat dry okra using a clean kitchen towel.

Trim the top part of Okra only. You can leave the bottom part of okra intact, it is absolutely edible.

Carefully make a vertical slit in the okra, without splitting the okra into two pieces.

Use a wide bottom pan, to fit okra in a single layer for even cooking. 

Be generous with the stuffing mix (Bharwa Masala) when stuffing, since the okra gets all it’s flavor from this spice mix only.

Cook the stuffed okra (Bharwa Bhindi), for first 30-60 seconds on a high heat. This will give a nice char flavor to the dish. Later reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until okra is tender and cooked.

Gently, toss the okra couple of times for even cooking. It takes around 8-10 minutes for okra to be cooked.

You can adjust the spiciness my adding more or less red chili powder.

To adjust the tanginess, add more or less dried mango powder (amchur).

 

Here are some more recipes for you to enjoy!!

Top 10 recipes of 2019

Dal Makhani –  creamy, flavorful, dal made with black gram lentils, kidney beans

Sarson Da Saag – mustard greens tempered with onion, garlic and some Indian spices

 Homemade Gheerich nutty flavor, nourishing and aromatic, homemade ghee

Aloo Gobi  – simple, easy, delicious Potato Cauliflower curry

Carrot Halwa , quick and easy carrot halwa.

 Broccoli Cheddar Soup  – thick, creamy soup made with broccoli, cheddar cheese

Strawberry Jam – 3-ingredients, super easy, finger-licking homemade Strawberry Jam

 

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Bharwan Bhindi (Stuffed Okra) - Stove Top, Air Fryer

Bharwan Bhindi (Stuffed Okra) is a popular Indian side dish. This spicy, tangy, lip smacking dish, is prepared by stuffing okra with a unique blend of spices and cooked to perfection. This dish is typically served with some Indian flatbread such as roti, paratha or naan. This dish is VEGAN, GLUTEN-FREE, PALEO and LOW-CARB recipe.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, North Indian
Keyword bharwan bhindi,stuffed okra,air fryer bharwan bhindi,air fryer stuffed okra,vegan,gluten-free,paleo,low-carb,healthy recipes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Jyoti Behrani

Ingredients

  • 1 pound okra / bhindi
  • 1/8 teaspoon HING (Asafoetida)
  • 2 tablespoon oil, (for stove top)

For Bharwan Masala (Stuffing Mix)

Extras:

  • Cooking spray, (for air fryer)

EQUIPMENT REQUIRED:

Instructions

  • Wash the okra. Spread okra on a clean kitchen towel and pat dry to absorb any extra moisture.
  • Cut the top of the okra. Make a vertical (lengthwise) slit on each okra, be careful not to cut the okra in half. It will still be intact on the other side.
  • Prepare the stuffing for the okra. Take a bowl, add all the dry spices - coriander powder, cumin powder, dried mango powder (amchur), red chili powder, turmeric and salt to taste. Mix all the spices until well combined.
  • Take a okra and stuff it generously with the prepared stuffing (masala). Repeat the process with the remaining okras. Keep it aside. Save any leftover stuffing (masala) for later use.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR STOVE TOP STUFFED OKRA (BHARWA BHINDI)

  • Heat a kadai / wok / frying pan. Add couple of tablespoons of oil. When oil is hot, add a pinch of asafoetida.
  • Carefully, slide all the stuffed okra onto the frying pan. Add all the leftover stuffing(masala). Let the okra sear for 30-60 seconds on a high heat.
  • Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook. Gently, stir the okra every couple of minutes, until the okra is tender and cooked. It takes around 8-10 minutes for okra to be cooked.
  • Dish out okra in a serving dish. Garnish with some fresh cilantro and some freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional). Serve stuffed okra with some Indian flatbread - roti, naan, paratha. Enjoy!

INSTRUCTIONS FOR AIR FRYER STUFFED OKRA (BHARWA BHINDI)

  • Spray the air fryer basket with some cooking oil. 
  • Place the stuffed okra in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Spray okra with some cooking oil.
  • Air fry okra at 350F for 10 minutes. Remove the basket and check for the doneness of okra. Note: Different air fryer have different temperature settings. Add 1 to 2 minutes of cooking time if required.
  • Repeat the process for the remaining okra.
  • Dish out okra in a serving dish. Garnish with some fresh cilantro and some freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional). Serve stuffed okra with some Indian flatbread – roti, naan, paratha. Enjoy!

Notes

Please refer to the post for the following:
  1. PRO TIPS FOR BHARWAN BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)
  2. HOW TO PICK OKRA FOR BHARWAN BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)
  3. VARIATIONS TO BHARWAN BHINDI (STUFFED OKRA)
  4. RECIPE FOR HOMEMADE STUFFING MIX (BHARWAN MASALA)

 

Jyoti Behrani

Hello!! Welcome to my blog, my journey Living Smart and Healthy! Cook with me easy and authentic Indian food and around the globe. Will be sharing tips and tricks on easy authentic cooking, without spending hours in the kitchen or comprising on authentic flavors. Keeping things simple and healthy is what I am all about. Life is simple, so lets keep cooking simple too!!

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