Cooking Classics: Fried Green Tomatoes

Cooking Lessons. Fried Green Tomatoes By rebecca gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & entertaining Brand Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist Photographer TV Cooking Personality Editorial Director Cooking & Baking Tutorials Practical Culinary & Cooking Techniques For Everyday Cooks Southern Hostess Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern SocialsCooking Classics

The Technique

Fried Green Tomatoes

 Fried green tomatoes have edged out as a culinary marvel in the last 20 years as a backdrop to showcase other local flavors region by region. You’ll find them on menus topped, slathered & stacked with anything from goat cheese, shrimp, blackberry preserves & pimiento cheese to pork belly, bacon & barbecue. What began as a humble side dish & a gardeners solution to using up the last of the tomato crop just before the first frost of the season has become the backbone to the ultimate creative culinary canvas. While they may not have originated in the south, they gained regional notoriety when the film Fried Green Tomatoes was released by Universal Pictures based off of a book by Birmingham native Fannie Flagg in the early 1990’s & we have certainly embraced, even nurtured many of their distinctively southern attributes claiming them as our own.

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rebecca gordon buttermilk lipstick Southern Recipes & How To's Easy Tailgate Recipes RebeccaGordon ButtermilkLipstickFried Green Tomatoes
makes 4 to 6 servings

Avoid choosing green tomatoes beginning to turn as you want that firm texture & tangy bite. Used to distinctively perfume fried fresh seafood, Old Bay stars as the main seasoning ingredient yielding the tastiest farmer’s market beauties you have ever. 

Canola oil
1/2 cup whole buttermilk
1 egg
3 tsp seafood seasoning blend, divided
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup plain yellow cornmeal
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 medium green tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices

Pour the oil to a depth of 1/2-inch in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Heat to 360 degrees. Meanwhile, whisk together the buttermilk, the egg & 1/2 tsp seasoning blend in a medium bowl. Whisk together the flour, the cornmeal,the salt & the remaining 2 1/2 tsp seasoning blend in a separate bowl. Dip the tomato slices into the buttermilk mixture. Dredge in the cornmeal mixture, shaking off the excess. Fry the tomatoes, in batches, 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the hot grease & place on a wire rack over a half sheet pan. Season with additional seafood seasoning & kosher salt, if desired.

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How To Make Fried Green Tomatoes

In the late 1880’s recipes for fried green tomatoes began surfacing in northern based newspapers. The loosely constructed instructions were presented to readers as solutions to a problem many gardeners faced when threat of the first frost of the season loomed– What can I do with the unripened fruit still on the vine? Savvy cooks & gardeners of the day picked the tart tomatoes & fried them to prevent food waste. Although recipes continued to pop up in newspapers & magazines throughout the 20th century, including those located in the south, fried green tomatoes didn’t really become popular as a southern food until Fannie Flagg’s book Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe was released as a film in 1992.

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rebecca gordon buttermilk lipstick Southern Recipes & How To's Easy Tailgate Recipes RebeccaGordon ButtermilkLipstickThe Technique

Choosing the right spice blend, coating & oil temperature for fried green tomatoes can mean the difference between a well seasoned crisp or a soggy vegetable. Make your best batch to date by following these essential tips. Here’s what you should know. 

No. 1

The Seasoning

Although salt & pepper are the most traditional seasonings used to prepare fried green tomatoes, adding a blend of herbs & spices can really add quality flavors to this humble side dish. A pantry staple in the South, seafood seasoning blend, offers a lovely note to this classic. 

No. 2

The Coating

Forget the heavy breading. Many fried green tomatoes prepared in restaurants take this route. Use ingredients every southern kitchen is well stocked with to make a comforting skillet of cornbread. Cornmeal provides excellent crunch. Mix with an equal amount of flour for a simple coating. Allow that tomato taste to really shine.

No. 3

The Frying

Once the tomato slices have been coated, be certain to drop them in oil at the proper temperature to avoid a side dish saturated in oil. Fry them until golden brown & drain well over a stack of paper towels.

The Tune
“The Weight” The Band from “The Last Waltz” featuring The Staple Singers

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About Rebecca Gordon

* Southern Born * Southern Bred * Tailgate Queen * Football Fanatic * Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Techniques Instructor * Cooking & Baking Tutorials * Media Personality * Baking & Pastry Artist * Gardener * Runner * Retainer of Useless Pop Culture One Liners * Terrible Dancer * Even Worse Singer * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Rebecca Gordon shares over 20 years of cooking knowledge in the instructional filled original editorial content on Buttermilk Lipstick as well as the cooking class format videos that can be found on her YouTube channel through regular collaboration with numerous media outlets. Gordon draws from an extensive background in corporate publishing spanning over 13 years on both the business and editorial side focusing on women’s southern lifestyle. She is a classically trained pastry chef and draws from fine dining restaurant experience from a James Beard award winning chef as well as her southern roots upbringing to share cooking, entertaining & style content relevant to today’s modern woman.

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