It’s a mistake to think of green tomatoes as always fried. Yes, there is the Southern, nostalgic movie, based on Fannie Flagg’s story, “Fried Green Tomatoes,” and the invincible deliciousness in New Orleans, when they “remoulade” green tomatoes. Also, Mario Batali brings us a green tomato spaghetti sauce, to name a few. You can do most anything with a fresh tomato, red or green.
Conventional fried green tomato recipes begin with green tomatoes which are unripe red tomatoes. Mature, green heirloom tomatoes are too soft to withstand the prep and frying process. Slice the tomatoes into 1/4-inch slices, season to taste, dredge in cornmeal and brown in bacon fat in a skillet. This gets varied regionally where bread crumbs or flour are used instead of cornmeal, some add a “wash” step of either beaten egg or buttermilk before the breading and they choose other fats, oils or butter.
As travel writers, we were treated to New Orleans’ Upperline Restaurant’s Fried Green Tomato with Shrimp Remoulade, which practically knocked our socks into the Mississippi. Chef’s remarkably sassy remoulade contained creole mustard, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, garlic, lemon juice, paprika, cayenne, olive oil, celery leaves, parsley, onions and hot sauce.
Mario Batali, of Food Network fame, feels spaghetti is an “equal tomato opportunity” dish, and in his Spaghetti with Green Tomatoes, he combines them with mint leaves, basil, arugula, dill, garlic and parmigiano-reggiano.
Green tomatoes are rich in antioxidants and B vitamins plus vitamin K.
Select unripe green tomatoes as you would ripe ones. You want them a little firmer, unblemished, preferably with stem intact. Do not refrigerate and use within a couple of days.
- Celery seed
- Hot sauce
- Mac and cheese
- Meat accent
- Mustard seed
- Relish, chow-chow, piccalilli
- Spaghetti sauce
- Stir fry
The simplest way to enjoy green tomatoes is to place seasoned slices on a greased cookie sheet in a 350-degree oven and roast for 30 to 40 minutes.
Below are foodsites which have green tomato recipes.