It’s late summer and okra is in season! This classic southern side dish is so hearty and delicious, I eat it all by itself spooned over some brown rice. However, it is delicious paired with some grilled pork chops, chicken, or fish.

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This version is made with bacon only because my husband, The Cheese, needs to have meat in everything. But, the bacon can easily be left out giving you a very healthy weekend night meal or side dish.

Here are the main players:

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Really simple and straightforward ingredients.

Start by chopping up a few slices of bacon into what the French call lardons. Or, Les lardons.

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Toss the bacon slices into a dutch oven or deep pot set over medium heat.

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Like I said, you could skip this step, but do you reaalllyyy want toooo?

Next, chop up an onion.

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And add the onion in with the bacon.

Sprinkle a little salt into the pot with the onions.

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While the onion and bacon are sauteing, chop a few cloves of garlic.

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Throw it in with the bacon and onions.

While those are cooking get your okra on the chopping block. Make sure it is washed very well.
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Roughly chop the okra into slices.

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Add those to the pot with a good pinch of Kosher salt and black pepper.

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Allow the okra to saute for a few minutes until the stickiness begins to work out of it, and it begins to crisp around the edges. Add more olive oil if necessary.

Once the okra is a little browned, add a good splash of white wine. I decided that the addition of wine would be a good idea after I started making this dish, which is why it is not featured in the initial photo. Don’t wine about it.

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Scrape up all the brown bits off the bottom. This will flavor the dish immensely.

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See, no more brown bits!

Let the wine cook out for a few more minutes while you are opening a large can of diced tomatoes. This is what I use:imageThese tomatoes are so roasty toasty and do really well in this dish.

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Pour the whole can in.

Then add one really small can of tomato sauce.

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Add a large pinch of Kosher salt and a few good cranks of pepper and mix the whole thing together.

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Turn down the heat to low, cover the pot and let the okra and tomatoes cook for 20 – 30 minutes.

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Spoon the okra and tomatoes over brown rice and enjoy! Serve with some grilled pork chops or chicken for a hearty and healthy week night meal!!

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Ingredients:

3 slices bacon, chopped into lardons (optional)

3 TB olive oil, divided

1 cup chopped onions (about half a large onion)

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 lb okra, washed very well and chopped

1/4 cup of white wine

1 28oz can of good quality diced tomatoes, fire roasted if possible

1 8 oz can of tomato sauce

3 tsp Kosher salt

1 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Add the bacon lardons to a dutch oven or deep pot set over medium heat. Brown the bacon for about one minute.

Add 1 TB of olive oil to the pan. Toss in the chopped onions, 1 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of black pepper. Stir and cook onions for 2 -3 minutes until translucent.

Add chopped garlic and cook for another minute being careful the garlic does not burn.

Add the remainder of the olive oil and the chopped okra to the pan. Sprinkle another 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper over the okra. Stir and allow the okra to cook for 3 -4 minutes until the stickiness has begun to seep out of the okra and it begins to brown.

Add the white wine and scrape the brown bits off of the bottom of the pan.

Add the diced tomatoes and the tomato sauce and the last 1 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of pepper. Stir everything together. Turn the heat down to low, cover, and allow the okra and tomatoes to cook for 20 – 30 minutes. Carefully taste the okra for seasonings and adjust to desired flavor. Enjoy!