A simple sauteed bhindi ki sabzi with cumin seeds, whole red chillies. Pairs beautifully with chapati and dahi or some daal chawal.
Pakistani food tends to be dominated by carnivorous dishes. When we think of it we think of Biryani, Haleem, and Nihari. As a result our wide range of simple sabzis and daals tends to be overlooked. Be it the ubiquitous Aloo Gobi or an Achari Aloo, there are many Pakistani vegetable dishes.
Bhindi is the clear star of each, but a differing treatment leads to the differing results. This simple bhindi sabzi is where the bhindi firmly takes center stage. It is one of the first things I learnt how to cook and a recipe I lean on regularly.
Kinds of Bhindi
There are two varieties of bhindi and they cook fairly differently. When possible please try to get Indian or Pakistani bhindi!
This Pakistani Bhindi ki Sabzi is so straightforward and as long as I have bhindi I can make it.
Step by Bhindi ki Sabzi Recipe
This easy Bhindi recipe rests on two things: bhindi that is well cooked (neither slimy nor mushy) and well seasoned. Fortunately both those things are easy enough to do.
I say this now, but when I was a novice cook I made one mashed bhindi too many.
We start by heating the pan and adding some oil on medium to medium high heat. To that you'll add cumin seeds and whole red chillies and let them sizzle and release their flavour. Then simply stir in your okra, salt, and chilli flakes.
Let your bhindi cook for a few minutes, then stir, and let it cook for another 5 minutes, before stirring again. Letting it cook uncovered (or even partially covered) helps the gumminess cook out. Stirring infrequently allows the gumminess to cook out without you breaking the tender bhindi. It will go from the picture on the left to the one on the right.
At this point (about 15-18 minutes in) your bhindi is totally done. However, I personally like it with a little bit more chew/colour/crunch so I saute a few minutes more on high heat (once again stirring infrequently).
What to Serve with Bhindi
Bhindi ki Sabzi
- 1 lb Okra
- 3-4 dried whole red chillies
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- ½-¾ red chilli flakes
- ¾-1 salt
- Oil for cooking a little less than ¼ cup
- Slice the okra into ½ cm coins.
- Heat oil in a saucepan, when it shimmers add the cumin seeds and dried whole red chillies
- Add the the salt and the chilli flakes to the oil, then add the okra and stir deftly to coat well.
- Cook uncovered on medium heat, stirring it every 5-6 minutes, the bhindi will darken, and cook through in 15-18 minutes for soft tender bhindi.
- For a darker bhindi with more of a chew turn the heat up and saute a few more minutes until it's to your desired doneness. Adjust seasoning.