This traditional Japanese okra salad will burst in your mouth with juicy, umami deliciousness! A quick & easy compliment to any Asian meal in less than 10 minutes!
Japanese okra salad (also known as okra ‘ohitashi’) is a household name in Japan. You won’t find many people in Japan who don’t know what okra is.
Japanese okra is commonly enjoyed in salad form, but you can also find it in soups, sauteed, and even skewered.
As long as you don’t mind okra’s slightly slimy texture, this okra salad recipe is simple, quick, healthy, and delicious!
What is Japanese Okra Salad?
Japanese okra salad is a simple and traditional dish, made with blanched okra, a sweetened soy sauce base, combined with the delicate flavor of bonito flakes.
It is full of umami that can be enjoyed both hot and cold.
What is okra?
Okra is a green, pod-shaped vegetable, with a slimy texture (especially when cooked). All parts of it can be consumed, however, some people cut off the cap, as it can sometimes be too tough to eat.
The longer you cook it, the slimier it will be! So for those who aren’t a big fan of the texture, cooking it for a shorter amount of time may be better, or you can de-slime it by cooking it with acidic foods, such as tomatoes or onions.
What does okra taste like?
Okra is slimy on the inside, with a sweet, grassy flavor overall. Texture aside, some say it resembles the mild flavor of green beans.
When raw, it has a crunch to it. You can also really feel the seeds in your mouth when you eat them raw.
However, the skin of raw okra can be quite tough, and for this reason, many people prefer it to be slightly cooked.
Once cooked, okra becomes tender and slimier.
What is the best way to eat okra?
Japanese okra is most commonly enjoyed as an okra salad or soup, but you can also saute them with your favorite meats or vegetables, grill them on skewers (delicious when wrapped in bacon!), fry them for a fried okra salad, or boil and drizzle them with olive oil, salt, pepper, or any spice of your choice!
Pro Tip – when buying okra in a bunch, look for those with smaller okra in them. Smaller okra tastes better than larger ones.
Is okra healthy for you?
Yes! Not only is it low in calories and carbs, but it contains both protein and fiber. It’s also an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K1 (good for blood clotting).
It also contains antioxidants that are known to reduce the risk of serious health conditions such as cancer, diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.
What ingredients do I need to make Japanese style okra salad?
- Okra – use fresh okra. Commonly found in most Asian supermarkets, and sold as a loose bunch. Look for those with smaller okra in them, as smaller ones taste better than larger ones.
- Soy Sauce – low sodium is preferred. For gluten free, you can use tamari or coconut aminos.
- Water – used for boiling okra and the sauce.
- Bonito Flakes – made from shaved dried bonito fish. Commonly used to make broth and is responsible for giving Japanese cuisine that signature umami flavor. Found in most Asian supermarkets. (Can sub with 1/8 tsp of hondashi).
- Japanese Sake – use Japanese cooking sake which is fairly inexpensive and can be found in most Asian supermarkets.
- Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
- Toasted Sesame Seed – toasted sesame seeds are found in most supermarkets or Asian supermarkets.
How to make okra salad?
Add okra to boiling water for a quick blanch, drain, then set aside.
For the sauce, you’ll be adding soy sauce, water, bonito flakes, Japanese cooking sake, and sweetener together in a pot for a quick boil and then simmer.
Drizzle sauce on top and sprinkle with toasted sesame seed & dried bonito flakes.
Can be served hot or cold.
What is the nutrition information for this Japanese okra salad recipe?
- 36 Calories
- 8g Carbohydrates
- 3g Fiber
- 2g Protein
- 1g Fat
- 0mg Cholesterol
- 259mg Sodium
- 309mg Potassium
- 83mg Calcium
- 1mg Iron
- 716ui Vitamin A
- 23mg Vitamin C
Looking for other Japanese appetizer recipes?
- Spicy Garlic Asian Cucumber Salad
- Japanese Miso Eggplant Stir Fry
- Bean Sprouts Stir Fry
- Bok Choy Stir Fry
- Japanese Miso Mayo Vegetables
Now, let’s get making this Japanese Okra Salad recipe!
- Prepping Time 5M
- Cooking Time 5M
- Total Time 10M
- Net Carb/Serv ~3g
- Servings 1
- 1 Cup Okra
- 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 tbsp Water
- 1 tbsp Bonito Flakes (can sub with 1/8 tsp of hondashi)
- 1 tbsp Japanese Sake (can substitute with dry sherry)
- 1 tsp Sweetener (sugar alternative, sugar or preferred sweetener)
- 1 tsp Toasted Sesame Seed (garnish)
- 1 tbsp Bonito Flakes (garnish)
1) Gather all the ingredients.
2) Boil about 2-3 cups of water in a stove top pot.
3) In another stove top pot, add Soy Sauce, water, Bonito Flakes, Japanese Cooking Sake and sweetener and bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 1 minute. Once 1 minute has passed, remove from heat and set aside.
4) Once water is boiling from step 2), add okra and cook for 2-3 minutes or until desired tenderness is reached.
5) Remove okra, slice into bite sizes pieces (we prefer around 1/2″) and transfer to a serving plate.
6) Pour sauce from making sure to push out any excess sauce from the Bonito Flakes with a strainer & spoon and top with Toasted Sesame Seed & Bonito Flakes. You can either serve hot or cold.
Hope you enjoy your Japanese Okra Salad!
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Japanese Okra Salad
- 1 Cup Okra
- 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 tbsp Water
- 1 tbsp Bonito Flakes can sub with 1/8 tsp of hondashi
- 1 tbsp Japanese Sake can substitute with dry sherry
- 1 tsp Sweetener sugar alternative, sugar or preferred sweetener
- 1 tsp Toasted Sesame Seed garnish
- 1 tbsp Bonito Flakes garnish
- Gather all the ingredients.
- Boil about 2-3 cups of water in a stove top pot.
- In another stove top pot, add Soy Sauce, 1 tbsp water, 1tbsp Bonito Flakes, Japanese Cooking Sake and sweetener and bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 1minute. Once 1 minute has passed, remove from heat and set aside.
- Once water is boiling from step 2), add okra and cook for 2-3 minutes or until desired tenderness is reached.
- Remove okra, slice into bite sizes pieces (we prefer around 1/2") and transfer to a serving plate.
- Pour sauce from making sure to push out any excess sauce from the Bonito Flakes with a strainer & spoon and top with Toasted Sesame Seed & Bonito Flakes. You can either serve hot or cold.
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