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Bento Recipes: Fried green tomatoes


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I live in Atlanta, Georgia, so sooner or later I was going to have to include some good ol' Southern cookin'. It was either this or fried okra, and I can't stand that stuff. The recipe here assumes one green tomato; multiply as needed to make as many as you like.

Get some green tomatoes. They should be really green, so green they shade toward white. If you can see any yellow or orange tinge on them, they're too ripe. If you slice them open and there's almost no jelly inside, they're perfect. If there's some, they're fine, as long as the tomato isn't shading to orange. You'll also need cornmeal, an egg, hot oil, and a frying pan.

Cut the tomato as you would if you were going to put it on hamburgers, about 1/4" thick. Break an egg into a bowl and beat it until it's omelet consistency. Dip the tomato slices into the egg, then coat them with cornmeal. (I use the shake-in-a-sandwich-bag method myself.) Fry them in the hot oil, turning once. The cornmeal will start to turn gold, but it won't get that celebrated golden brown color. When they're done, take them out and drain well on paper towels.

You can also use storebought fish & chip batter instead of egg and cornmeal. Just use it according to the instructions, but with tomato slices instead of fish. Remember to set aside some of the dry mix so you can dunk the tomatoes in it before sticking them in the batter. This will help the batter stick to the tomatoes.

There are various dips that go well with these. The best I've found is a buttermilk dip I bought from Folks restaurant. A close second is storebought tartar sauce.

By the way, if the tomatoes do turn out to be too ripe when you slice them, don't throw them away. Green tomatoes go well on hamburgers. They add a nice flavor and texture. Try it some time!