A Southern Seasonal Delicacy: Fried Green Tomatoes
Let's face it, tomatoes have to stay on the vine a long time before they are juicy, red and ready to eat, shortening the time we can enjoy them. So why wait? Green tomatoes (or unripe tomatoes) can be just as tasty when cooked the right way! In honor of our "green tomato" season, let's make some of this delicious southern delicacy!
Introduction to Green Tomatoes
It probably is important to note a few quick things about green tomatoes. First, they contain the chemical solanine which is an alkaloid. Some folks have sensitivities to this natural component of unripe tomatoes. This means that it is always best to thoroughly cook your green tomatoes and be sure not to eat too many (even though that can be hard), until you know your sensitivity level. Second, green tomatoes contain quite a few vitamins and minerals and can be a healthy addition to the diet, especially without the breading ;). If you want to enjoy them without all of the bad stuff, cooking with a bit of olive oil and seasoning can suffice as well.
Despite sounding risky, consuming green tomatoes is entirely safe and delicious! When selecting tomatoes, choose the largest ones (it is a plus if they are starting to turn colors). It can sometimes be hard to find them so talk to local growers or start a few tomato plants for yourself! If you are local to WNC or Upstate SC, send us an email and we can help you find some.
Once you have selected the perfect green tomatoes, simply slice them into relatively thin pieces and get ready to cook them!
The "Not So Healthy" Step: Frying
Now that you have plucked these lovely unripe fruits it is time to cover them in breading and fry them until they are golden brown! This may not be super healthy, but it sure does taste good! If you want to opt for the healthier version just coat your green tomatoes in some olive oil, add some seasoning and either fry or bake until cooked thoroughly.
To make some southern style dry breading, mix equal parts flour and cornmeal and add salt and pepper to taste. Next, add an egg and 3/4 cup of buttermilk to a bowl and whisk well. Dip the tomatoes in wet mixture and then roll them in the breading mix. There is not really a way to mess up this recipe!
Next just add some oil to the frying pan and fry until golden brown! Serve with some homemade ranch dressing for a delicious, crispy snack or side! Now all that is left to do is sit back with a glass of sweet tea and enjoy!
We hope you have enjoyed this brief introduction to southern fried green tomatoes! If you are in the area and would like to reserve a few before they are ripe, be sure to email us! Happy cooking!