Monday, November 5, 2012

Chili 'n' Cornmeal-Crusted Fried Green Tomatoes

I'd never cooked fried green tomatoes, before making them for this post. I'm not entirely sure if I'd ever eaten them before this, either.

I'm a Northern girl: I was born and raised in New York City, I've spent the past 30+ years in Michigan, and even my ancestors all come from Canada and from Northern Europe. Southern food is a beautiful thing when it comes to barbecue or cornbread or pimiento cheese or pecan pie! But items like grits and okra ... not a fan. Although I knew it was possible to cook them, unripe tomatoes always seemed to find themselves on my "naughty" list, too.

And so, I would usually just let my green tomatoes ripen rather than making use of them "as is." I lumped them into a category with other foods you need to be raised on to really enjoy.

But you know what? These were pretty good! I was missing out on a quick, easy, lovely side dish all these years!

A sprinkle of chili powder in the cornmeal coating added a bit of "oomph," and complemented the sauce - a simple mix of sour cream and pico de gallo - perfectly.

Who knew? I guess you just have to keep trying new foods, to see what you might like, what you might have developed a taste for, what enticement you might be depriving yourself of ....

Chili 'n' Cornmeal-Crusted Fried Green Tomatoes

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • generous splashes of Tabasco sauce
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal, medium grind
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 medium green tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons light olive oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2/3 cup pico de gallo

Combine the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper in a small flat bowl. Combine the egg, water, and Tabasco sauce in a second flat bowl. Place the cornmeal, remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and chili powder into a third flat bowl.

Slice the tomatoes about 1/3" thick, discarding ends.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Slice by slice, coat the tomatoes first in flour, then in egg, then in cornmeal; add to the skillet. Cook for 2-3 minutes or so per side, until coating is golden and crisp.

Stir together sour cream and pico de gallo.

Serve the tomatoes topped with the sauce.

Serves 2-4 as a light lunch or a side dish.


Jenn said...

I adore fried green tomatoes! If you want to make them really sinful, fry them up in bacon grease.. Oh yea.. talk about naughty!! :)

Cranberry Morning said...

Of course it's too late for my green tomatoes who have all bitten the dust, but I AM making these next year when I've got a new crop of green tomatoes. I have never ever eaten a green tomato. Oh the shame of it! Must remedy!

Bibi @ Bibi's Culinary Journey said...

I keep hearing about Fried Green Tomatoes more and more lately and I never tried them. I am so ready :)

Candace said...

Love the chili addition! These look amazing. It has been forever since I've had some of these. I'm hungry now!

Judee @ Gluten Free A-Z said...

Who hasn't heard of fried green tomatoes? It's a recipe that everyone knows about but few Northerners have actually tried, I know I haven't. I'm taking your lead and will pin this recipe to make next year for the end of tomato season.

Debra said...

These look delicious. I just tried fried green tomatoes for the first time this year.

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