Daily Veg: Okra with Green Papaya at Neerob, the Bronx
At Neerob (reviewed here), fish takes center stage. But not to the neglect of vegetables, which often appear in simpler guises. One of the best is their okra with green papaya ($3), a great gateway dish for those who have been turned off by the vegetable's notorious sliminess. Here, it's hardly slimy at all.
The crunchier texture and sweet flavor of the thinly sliced papaya plays off nicely with the softer okra, which retains an element of squishiness and all of its delicate flavor. Rather then the ubiquitous mustard oil, the primary seasoning employed is turmeric. The dish is not as fiery as some of the restaurant's other fare, and more straightforward then the sauce-heavy fish plates. Eaten properly—by scooping up chunks with your hand and mixing them in with dhal-doused rice—it's nothing short of exposure therapy, getting you back on the okra-lovers train.