Hot oil blisters okra and wicks away its slime almost instantaneously in this quick stir-fry. The okra combines with another late summer staple, corn, and fiery red chiles, scallions and garlic. A touch of brown sugar highlights the sweetness in the corn, while soy sauce and toasted sesame oil enhance the okra’s umami depth.
Pour 1/4 cup oil into a large skillet or flat-bottomed wok and heat over high heat for at least 3 minutes. Add half the okra, toss to coat in the oil, then spread out in an even layer. Cook, undisturbed and tossing only every 2 minutes, until the okra is golden brown all over and crisp, 4 to 6 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and using a slotted spoon or tongs, transfer the okra to a plate, leaving the oil in the pan. Return the pan to the heat, and repeat cooking the remaining okra. Once the okra is removed, discard the oil and wipe the skillet clean with paper towels.
Return the pan to high heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add the garlic, chile, light green and white parts of the scallions and the corn, toss to coat with the oil, then spread out in an even layer. Cook, undisturbed and tossing only every minute, until the corn is lightly browned and tender but with a slight bite and the aromatics are soft, 2 to 3 minutes.
Return the okra to the skillet along with the soy sauce, sesame oil and sugar and cook, tossing constantly, until the liquid evaporates and the ingredients are well-combined, about 1 minute more.
Transfer everything to a serving platter and sprinkle with the thinly sliced dark green scallions, sesame seeds and cilantro. Serve while hot with rice or noodles.
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