Never fails that when I watch a movie about the South, I’m bound to want to cook something. Fried Green Tomatoes is one of those movies that I have shamelessly watched since 1991 to the point that if TBS, TNT, or any sort of channel decided to play it, I was watching it. I could never decide whether I wanted a friend like Idgie Threadgoode or to be her. I suppose the movie hits me on two levels: the first being that I always wanted a big brother and (SPOILER ALERT) Idgie loses her big brother, the second being that I have always been fascinated with what a fried green tomato actually tasted like (a unicorn-kind of food here in Southern California) even though it took me some years later to even like tomatoes at all.
So it was a serendipitous that I was watching Fried Green Tomatoes days after I had bought heirloom tomatoes.
Fried Green Tomatoes
~2-3 green or yellow heirloom tomatoes (believe me, you can’t use red) sliced 1/4 inch thick
~ a shallow bowl with a cup of flour, 1/2 tsp of garlic salt
~ another shallow bowl with 1 egg beaten with 1 cup of buttermilk, 1 tsp of smoked paprika, and 1 tsp of cayenne
~ a third shallow bowl with a cup of cornmeal, 1 tsp of smoked paprika, and 1 tsp of cayenne, 1/2 a tsp of garlic salt
Heat up your oil in your frying pan. Start by dredging your tomato slices in the flour bowl, followed by the egg bowl, and then the cornmeal bowl, making sure that they are fully coated at each stage. Once the oil is hot, get ready for some splatter and start frying up your tomatoes until they are golden brown, flipping to get both sides. Let fried tomatoes rest on a rack with paper towels to absorb residual oil.
Now the secret is in the sauce because these can be mighty spicy if you get heavy with your cayenne and paprika. Serve with Ranch or a Buttermilk Sauce to cool down the palate.
Okay, so maybe this wasn’t an entire dinner by your book but that’s all I ate! They would be great to serve as a side or a snack.