Fried Green Tomatoes
I always wanted to try fried green tomatoes since I saw the fabulous movie Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Cafe released in 1991 starring Kathy Bates and Jessica Tandy amongst others. I had never eaten them until I went to New Orleans in 1996 and went way out of town on a recommendation of a great cafe to try soft shell crabs. Well, they had fried green tomatoes (along with a waitress who described them with the right accent) and I was hooked. Now Gamberro Rosso has shared a piece Food and cinema. The true story of American fried green tomatoes along with a recipe, which is slightly different from mine here.
The green tomatoes used are unripe tomatoes so firmer, less juicy and tangier than their ripe counterparts. You find them at the end of the tomato season when they don’t always have the warm weather needed to ripen.
3 medium-sized, firm green tomatoes
1 cup (175g) plain flour
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
1/2 cup buttermilk or milk with a squeeze of lemon
1 large egg
1/3 cup (55g) fine white cornmeal (see below)
1/2 cup (50g) Panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup (60 ml) extra virgin olive oil for frying
Aioli or Louisiana style remoulade, to serve
- Cut unpeeled tomatoes into 1- 1.5 cm slices. Sprinkle with salt and stand for 5 minutes. Pat dry.
- Whisk together the egg and buttermilk or milk soured with lemon. Combine flour and Cajun seasoning on a flat plate. Combine cornmeal and breadcrumbs on a flat plate.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat until hot.
- Dip the dry tomato slices in the flour, shaking to remove excess. Then dip in the egg mixture, then the cornmeal-breadcrumb mix.
- Fry the breaded tomato slices in batches, for 3-5 minutes on each side or until brown. Drain on paper towel and repeat until all are cooked.
- Serve immediately with aioli or Louisiana style remoulade.
Lyndey’s Note: White cornmeal (polenta) is traditional in the Southern states of the USA where this recipe comes from. However, you could substitute yellow. Cajun seasoning mix is made from paprika, garlic powder, dried oregano, onion powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Louisiana style remoulade is based on mayonnaise with the addition of mustard, garlic, paprika, and Cajun or Creole seasonings.