These days, I have learned to accept and even appreciate the ebb and flow of our backyard garden. Watching plants come and go despite hard work and nurturing can be quite exhausting but it’s also a genuine labor of love. One true pleasure of having a garden in Alabama in late summer is getting to enjoy an abundance of fresh tomatoes. For weeks we have been indulging in sun-ripened Super Sweets, Sun Golds, Heirlooms and Brandywines just to name a few. Grocery store tomatoes just don’t hold a candle to these homegrown beauties. In an effort to sell uniformly ripe tomatoes, many breeders have mutated genes that give your everyday store-bought tomato a tasteless flavor. Well no thanks! I recommend sticking with something you know is real from a local gardener or farmer’s market.
Another benefit that you can’t always get in stores is access to green tomatoes! I finally plucked some of the slightly immature fruit from our plants this week to fry them up as a special treat.
Good thing our site has pages and pages of delicious fried green tomato recipes! I finally settled on this one from Southern Living because it is a trusted five-star recipe that dates back to 2003. The ingredients are simple but the flavor is anything but. We don’t fry much in our house so the process of dipping, dredging and frying was a fun change of pace.
After a few minutes frying on each side in a cast iron skillet, these otherwise plain green tomatoes transformed into something really special. As the cooked tomatoes drained on a paper towel-lined plate, I honestly had a hard time restraining myself. The cornmeal/flour crust was perfectly brown, crispy and it actually stayed put!
All in all, I was really shocked at how great this dish turned out. I mixed up a quick sriracha remoulade sauce and sautéed some shrimp to turn the basic tomato recipe into a main course we could enjoy for dinner. The results were amazing. Although my kitchen was a mess, it was completely worth it. I will definitely make this again before the tomato season is over. It's a company-worthy dish that rivals the fried green tomatoes at any authentic southern diner. And something about knowing exactly where these veggies came from makes this savory dish just that much sweeter.
Hungry yet? For a gallery of our favorite green tomato recipes click here!