One Extra Step Adds Maximum Crunch To Your Air Fryer Breaded Okra

fried okra close-up
fried okra close-up - leherv/Shutterstock

Say goodbye to lackluster fried okra and hello to a crispy revelation that will save you time and effort thanks to a beloved kitchen appliance: the air fryer. The secret to achieving the perfect crunch and golden-brown color lies in an unexpected step. To achieve the best results, you should toast the breading mixture before coating the okra. With this transformative technique, you can elevate your air fryer okra game to new heights.

The key to this culinary triumph is heating up the breading mixture with a bit of oil on the stovetop before applying it to the okra. Not only does this step do wonders for the texture by making the breading crunchy to begin with, but the oil helps to brown the mixture in advance, too. With better texture and color, the entire dish is elevated beyond what could have been soggy, pale air fryer okra.

For the best results, begin by slicing your fresh okra into bite-sized pieces. Pat them dry to ensure there is no residual moisture. In a skillet, heat a small amount of oil and add the breadcrumbs, cornmeal, and your choice of seasonings. Gently toast the mixture until it reaches a golden-brown color. After the breading has cooled enough to handle, toss the okra pieces in the toasted mixture until they are evenly coated. The breading will also adhere better to the okra when toasted, resulting in a more consistent and satisfying crunch.

Read more: 21 Plant-Based Chefs You Need To Know

Extra-Crispy Air Fryer Okra

air fryer okra with sauce
air fryer okra with sauce - Nazile Keskin/Shutterstock

Once the okra pieces are breaded, preheat the air fryer to whatever temperature your recipe calls for. Next, arrange the coated okra pieces in a single layer to ensure even cooking. Be sure to give them a light mist of oil to encourage browning. Air fry the okra pieces until they achieve a beautiful golden-brown color and a delightful crunch. Remember to shake the basket a few times during cooking to ensure uniform crispiness.

For the best results, be sure the okra pieces are not too crowded in the air fryer basket. Crowding can hinder proper airflow and lead to uneven cooking. While misting the okra with oil is essential for crisping, use a light hand. The key to avoiding greasy okra is to cut back on the oil and keep the heat high. Finally, for the ultimate crunch, enjoy your air fryer okra as soon as it's done cooking. This ensures the breading retains its perfect crispiness.

Mastering the art of achieving crispy okra in your air fryer is simpler than you think. Just toast the breading, coat the okra, air fry them together, and savor the irresistible delight of perfectly crispy fried okra.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.