Monday, July 23, 2012

Fried Green Tomatoes

I grew up in Minnesota and as far as I know fried green tomatoes are not popular here, which is a shame. The first time I tried fried green tomatoes was as an adult at a cafe in San Louis Obispo, CA at the urging of my dear friend Gwen (who happens to be from the south). I could eat paste with Gwen and it would be pleasant, so maybe I made up this recipe to remind me of her since I miss her all the time and it's way better than paste.

Obviously you have to grow (or know someone who grows) tomatoes and pick some that are green since they don't sell them in the least they don't in Minnesota. Maybe they do in the south, in which case, luckies!

4 large green tomatoes, 1/2 inch thick slices
1/2 c. fine corn meal
1 tsp. smoked paprika, or sweet if you don't have smoked
Dash of cayenne
Sea salt and black pepper

1) Slice the tomatoes into 1/2" thick rounds and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Lay them out on some paper towels or a kitchen towel for a few minutes so that they can get juicy from the salt.

2) Mix the cornmeal, paprika and cayenne in a wide bowl or pie pan. After the tomatoes have been salted for a few minutes coat them in the cornmeal and spice mixture.

3) Heat 1/4 c. canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat (more high than medium). Put a layer of coated tomatoes into the pan do not crowd them. Fry the tomatoes until golden brown on each side, about 3-5 minutes per side, making sure to be very careful as you flip the tomatoes.

4) Remove the tomatoes when they are evenly browned on both sides and carefully place on a wire rack or in a colander so that they don't get soggy.

5) Continue to fry the tomatoes in batches, adding more oil as necessary until the tomatoes are done.

To serve, drizzle the tomatoes with homemade vegan buttermilk ranch dressing and Louisiana Hot Sauce.

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