Cut the okra into 1/4-inch pieces and place into a colander. Rinse under cold water and allow to drain only slightly.
Place the cornmeal into a sealable ziptop bag. Add the okra and shake to coat thoroughly.
Add enough vegetable oil to a cast iron or stainless steel skillet in order to completely cover the bottom of the pan. Place over medium heat and heat until the oil reaches 370 degrees F. Add the okra all at once and fry until golden brown on 1 side, approximately 6 to 7 minutes. Do not disturb until the bottom is golden brown. Turn the okra with a spatula and do not disturb until the majority of the other side is golden brown as well, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Now stir occasionally until all of the okra is golden on all sides, approximately another 3 to 4 minutes. 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