Summer's Obssession with Green Tomatoes

August 7, 2015

Cooking with green tomatoes has always been apart of the Southern foodway for quite some time but really made its mark in the culinary world with the release of Fannie Flagg’s Southern novel “Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe” in 1987.  The humble green tomato was further popularized when the film when the movie came out a few years later.  

Green tomatoes are considered part of the end-of-summer spoils.  Cooks everywhere, take advantage of sweet and juicy vine ripened tomatoes before the season is brought to a bitter end before the coming of the first frost.  Once the icy air hits the plants, they are done for.  Rather than losing the last of the unripened tomatoes dripping from the vine, Southerners have put the green tomato to good use.

Green tomatoes are the spunky cousin to their ripened counterpart.  They are firm, tart, and their flavor blossoms when cooked.  It comes at no surprise (see above) that the most well-known preparation for green tomatoes is frying them.  Green tomato slices are dredged in a combination of flour and cornmeal before they take a bath in a cast iron pan filled with fat (preferably, bacon grease).  The result is a mellow slice of tomato contrasted by a crisp crust which makes for great eating.  That being said, green tomatoes can be used in a myriad of other ways in the kitchen.  They are wonderful pickled, transformed into chutney, or added to biscuits.  

Now that I have given you something to look forward to at the end of this season, cook my pretties, cook!

Pickled Green Tomatoes
Recipe from Avocado A Day Nutrition

Fried Green Tomatoes and Shrimp with Spicy Remoulade
Submitted to Foodista by Sheri Wetherell

Roasted Green Tomato Salsa
Recipe from Oak Hurst Kitchen

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