Tempura Okra Spears With Homemade Ketchup
Recipe by Charlotte Culinary Expert Heidi Billotto
10-12 local okra, cut into halves or quarters, lengthwise
2 cups self-rising flour
1 cup cornstarch
3 cups unflavored sparkling water
Sea salt and pepper to taste – make it spicier to taste with the addition of chili power, adobo seasoning and cumin!
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and cornstarch. Add sparkling water and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Toss cut okra in additional flour just to cover.
Heat vegetable oil in a large heavy bottomed pot using the wooden spoon test to judge readiness.
Dip floured okra in batter, one at a time, allowing excess batter to drain off. Carefully place dipped okra pieces in oil and cook until golden brown.
Remove from oil with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel-lined plate or wire rack to drain. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper while still warm. Repeat dipping and frying with remaining okra – eat and enjoy immediately.