Rinse the whole okra pods under cold water, drain, pat dry, trim and cut into 1/4-inch pieces. Set aside.
Place the cornmeal into a sealable ziptop bag. Add the okra and shake to coat thoroughly. Return the okra to a dry colander and shake off excess cornmeal.
Add enough vegetable oil to a 12-inch stainless steel saute pan in order to completely cover the bottom of the pan. Place over medium-high heat and bring the oil to 370 degrees F. Add the okra and fry until golden brown on 1 side, approximately 5 to 6 minutes. Stirring occasionally, continue cooking until okra is golden brown on all sides, approximately 5 to 6 minutes longer. Remove the okra from the pan with a slotted spoon or spatula to a cooling rack set over a newspaper-lined sheet pan. Season, to taste, with salt and allow to cool for 1 to 2 minutes before serving.
Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown, 2006