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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Fried Green Tomatoes, While We May

There she sat in the crisper in all her gracious, green plump beauty, taunting, tempting me to have my way with her, aching to be consumed: the last Aunt Ruby's German Green Tomato from my friend's Secret Garden. But what to do? Pickles? Sweet relish, perhaps--or simply relish some fried green tomatoes. I dove into the latter and never looked back. I suggest going forth as well and make the most of these obscenely succulent wild fruits while the season is upon us. The recipe below is certainly quite suitable but I can hardly take any credit for the particular dish I served. I merely stepped aside and let nature in her simple, resplendent beauty astound.

Per usual, my comments are in italics.

Fried Green Tomatoes
Adapted from
1 cup cornmeal
1½ Tbsp. Cajun seasoning I used Old Bay seasoning to marvelous effect.
1 tsp. kosher salt, plus extra for sprinkling
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. dried thyme
Canola oil for frying
3 medium-sized round green tomatoes, sliced ½-inch thick
Grated Parmesan cheese to taste (optional) Absolutely no need for this.

Shake the cornmeal and seasonings in a plastic bowl with a lid (or use a large plastic storage bag). Yes, just like Shake n' Bake.
Heat about 1/8-inch canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Who can measure that? Just coat the skillet with the oil, placing the tomatoes in when oil is just about smoking and then add more oil around them, just enough so oil reaches half of the tomatoes slices and aren't submerged when it's time to flip them.
Add 4 to 6 tomato slices to the breading mix and shake to coat.
Fry the slices in the hot oil until the cornmeal browns, turning once, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. I think it takes longer, so plan on that.
Remove from the oil, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate or baking tray, and sprinkle with salt while they are still hot. Great idea! And repeat with the rest of your tomatoes.
Top with grated cheese before serving, if desired. No! Don't strangle it!

Thanks to for the image.

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