Frying is the theme of this 18th edition of Is My Blog Burning, hosted by Linda of At our table. Now, I am not a big fryer. Don’t get me wrong, fried food tastes good. Great even. But I want and like to eat healthy when I’m eating at home.
Last year, I had a great dinner at B. Smith’s restaurant in New York. I ordered Fried Green Tomatoes as an appetiser. It isn’t something that commonly pops up on menus out here in California. Fried green tomatoes are a classic Southern dish made from unripe tomatoes. Green tomatoes are pleasantly firm and more crunchy than their riper counterparts. They have a hint of tomato flavor, but taste rather lemony. Green tomatoes are best when nearing ripeness. They should be juicy around the seeds, but be far less juicy than any ripe tomato. This firmness makes them great candidates for both breading and frying.
I decided to oven-fry my green tomatoes. I did take B. Smith’s advice and was sure to use celery salt in my recipe. I added breadcrumbs for an extra crunch, but the texture of the cornmeal is imperative for a classic touch. The coating crisps up nicely in the oven and the tomato retains its shape but becomes soft in the center.
Oven Fried Green Tomatoes
3 large green tomatoes
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup breadcrumbs (preferably Panko)
1 tsp celery salt
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1/2 cup buttermilk
Turn on your broiler and place oven rack about 4 inchs away. Grease a baking sheet with cooking spray.
Slice tomatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices.
Whisk together flour, cornmeal, breadcrumbs, and spices. Pour into a flat, shallow dish. Whisk together egg and buttermilk in a small bowl.
Dip tomato slices in egg mixture and then dredge in cornmeal mixture. Lay tomato slices onto baking sheet and spray lightly with vegetable oil.
Bake for 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Flip and bake an additional 3-4 minutes, until browned.
Serve immediately with ranch dressing or salsa and sour cream.
For a more traditional version – actually fried green tomatoes – check out Caryn‘s IMBB entry! Great minds think alike. And either way, your tastebuds will thank you.
RaineyAugust 27, 2005
Mmmmm. Love ’em! …but it never occurred to me not to fry them. I see you got nice browning and, it looks like, nice crunch to your crust.
I’d try your recipe out right now if all this heat hadn’t stopped production on my tomato plants in their tracks. =(
JAugust 27, 2005
hi nic, those look awesome, as always! oven-fried green tomatoes…what a terrific idea…cheers,j
NicAugust 27, 2005
Rainey – I’m having the same problems! I’m glad I got these out before the heat really kicked up.
J – Thanks! I was pretty pleased with the results.
boo_liciousAugust 28, 2005
They look great and healthy too! Yummy.
joeyAugust 28, 2005
Looks yummy! I have never tasted this in my life, and it’s not something that is really served anywhere where I live…but I have always been curious…now I can try it myself! Thanks for the recipe 🙂
LoriAugust 29, 2005
What do fried green tomatoes taste like? I cannot imagine. 😛
Chef AimeeAugust 29, 2005
Ooh! I had fried green tomatoes for the first time at the South City Kitchen in Atlanta, Georgia in May. Loved them… I think I was from the South in a former life or something…. yum!
RachaelAugust 29, 2005
I made these too! Well, I made fried Green Zebra tomatoes, which were a touch too ripe I fear…LOL. Anyway, I think its great so many of us tried this! Yours look spectacular.
NicAugust 29, 2005
Boo_licious – Thanks!
Joey – Some people think that this dish is just a movie title.
Lori – They taste soft and cruncy, slighty tart and tomato-y, and, most importantly, good.
Aimee – I feel the same way when I eat these. Not a bad place to be from!
Rachael – Thanks! Some of the ones I used were green Zebras, too!