Gluten-free Greek Okra and Potatoes Stewed in a Rich Tomato Sauce (Bamies/ Μπάμιες)

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'Bamies' [pronounced bAM-YEs in Greek] or okra, and commonly go by the name ‘lady fingers’. Okra are traditionally stewed with potatoes in a rich tomato sauce and are enjoyed by many in Greece as a vegetarian / vegan main meal.

Serve with gluten-free bread to mop up the delicious suace, or as a side with chicken and feta cheese.

Some people suggest soaking the okra in water with vinegar beforehand, however, my mother and grandmother never did this and the dish was always perfect! 

My mother's tip is to trim the stems in a conical way and never cut them in half as okra produce a slimey substance and this can alter the texture of the dish. 

If you can, it's also best to get smaller okra about 4-6cm long to avoid any tough stringy fibres.

This is my mothers authentic Greek recipe and I hope you love it as much I have done over the years.

SERVINGS.

4-6 Servings

PREP TIME.

20 Minutes

COOK TIME.

50-60 minutes

INGREDIENTS.

  • Approximately 500g okra, tips trimmed and rinsed

  • 3-4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters

  • 3-4 Tbsp Greek extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 large red onion (or white), finely diced

  • 3-4 garlic cloves, diced

  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes

  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste/ concentrate

  • Handful fresh parsley, roughly chopped

  • Pinch nutmeg, freshly grated 

  • Warm water

  • 1 vegetable or chicken stock cube

  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste

METHOD.

  1. Wash the okra and drain them in a colander.

  2. Trim the stems carefully in a conical shape, taking care not to expose the centre.

  3. In a wide pot over medium heat, lightly sauté the onions and the garlic, then add the chopped potatoes, keep stirring for a couple of minutes.

  4. Add the chopped tomatoes, tomate paste, stock cube, and a pinch of sugar and cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally.

  5. Add the okra, salt, pepper, chopped parsley, a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg and warm water to cover 3/4 of the okra and potato mixture.

  6. Give it a gentle stir to cover the okra in the tomato sauce.

  7. Cover the pot and cook slowly on low with a gentle simmer for 50-60 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked and the sauce thickens. 

  8. Keep a close eye on it in case it needs more water. You only shake the pot gently side to side a couple times to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom, do not stir as the okra will become mush.

  9. Allow to cool a little before serving so the sauce can thicken slightly and the okra to absorb the yummy juices.

SERVE THIS WITH.

HEALTH BENEFITS.

Okra -  is rich in magnesium, folate, fibre, vitamin C, K1, and A, as well as the antioxidant polyphenol which may help protect against inflammation. (Source)


Potatoes - are packed with nutrients, minerals, antioxidants and resistant starches which in particular is a source of nutrition for beneficial gut bacteria. (Source)


Greek extra virgin olive oil - specifically Greek oil, has the lowest acidity (approximately 0.5%) and is packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Benefits may include anti-inflammatory properties, lowering cholesterol and blood pressure and improves bone calcification. (Source)


Red onion nutrient dense, meaning they're low in calories but high in vitamins and minerals. Red onions are rich in anthocyanin, which are powerful plant pigments that may protect against heart disease, certain cancers and diabetes. (Source)


Garlic - contains antioxidants that protect against cell damage and ageing, helps improve blood pressure, cholesterol and bone health. (Source)


Parsley - provides a concentrated source of nutrients, particularly rich in vitamins A, C, and K. The vitamins and beneficial plant compounds in parsley may improve bone health, protect against chronic diseases, and provide antioxidant benefits. (Source)


Nutmeg -  high in antioxidants and found to have many health benefits, including pain relief, soothing indigestion, strengthening cognitive function, detoxifying the body, boost skin health and increase immune system function. Nutmeg can also be toxic in large doses, but small amounts used in the kitchen is fine. (Please note that nutmeg should not be given to cats or dogs.) (Source)

HAVE YOU MADE THIS?

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  • Many of my recipes call for Greek products like Greek extra virgin olive oil, Greek honey or Greek oregano. It is not mandatory for it to be Greek in order to make the recipe, you are more than welcome to use a good quality alternative; just keep in mind if you are after the authentic flavours of Greece these details do make all the difference in Greek cuisine. You can shop these ingredients here.​

  • Kindly note, by purchasing products via certain affiliate links in this post, I may receive a commission. This in no way increases the cost to you. I only recommend products based on my preferences to help you get the best results. Thank you for your support.

  • Disclaimer: None of the health benefits listed are intended to diagnose or treat any pre-existing health conditions. Always consult a health care practitioner before making any health decisions. The benefits listed are from my own research and personal interest, and encourage you to follow the Source and do further research.

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