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Southern Comfort

June 4, 2012

fried green tomatoes

I have been away a bit. Away from from the blog and away from the kitchen. I haven’t lost my mojo- just a little vertebrae. Yeah, that’s not a typo. I had cervical spine surgery* a few weeks ago, and the most of those days were spent in bed- taking pills and sleeping.  I couldn’t swallow anything for a good while and cooking was out of the question. I am still quite limited in what I can do- but I feel MUCH better and very blessed to have had a great doctor.  Finally today I felt doing something and fried green tomatoes seemed the perfect reentry into the kitchen. Simple, delicious comfort food.

The second most important ingredient for FGT’s is buttermilk. I ALWAYS have buttermilk on hand, usually, but of course today- I didn’t. NO biggie, I am all about making whatever I can from “scratch.” This is so easy to do. Barely a little bump in the recipe road. Exactly two ingredients. Vinegar and milk. One cup milk- one tablespoon vinegar, stir. Wait 10 minutes. Stir again. Boom! Buttermilk.

10 minute buttermilk.

While the milk was curdling I decided to look for a recipe. Tennessee born and Texas raised, I didn’t need a recipe to make these. But I have collected so many recipe books- I thought I’d see what “real” recipes were out there.  Sara Beth Foster has a beautiful book about southern cooking appropriately called Sara Beth Foster’s Southern Kitchen.  The  Fried Green Tomatoes  recipe was close to my own but with actual measurements!  With fresh buttermilk ready to go so was I. This is a very straightforward process.

Heat the oil of your choice in a iron skillet. While it’s working mix cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt and pepper in a bowl. (I made a slight change- I used half stoneground cornmeal and half coarse polenta. It made the crust little crunchier- I like crunch.)  Next, in another bowl mix the buttermilk and the egg. Slice the tomatoes.

Dip the tomatoes in the cornmeal mixture, then the milk then the cornbread again. Shake off the excess and fry them until they are deep brown on each side. Be patient and let them cook nicely on the first side. If you turn them more than once- it makes the crust more prone to falling off. The one on the right is a little too well done for some, but trust me friends, it tasted GREAT.

mmmm…. fried…. mmmmm

Some folks like to eat their FGTs with a sauce on the side; Blue Cheese or Ranch or Green Goddess- I don’t care about all that. At least not today. Today it was all about getting a pretty picture before they got cold. Once that was done, it was all about eating. Finally. Cooking and eating and enjoying being back.

evidence of the impatient patient

 

* yogis, don’t EVER allow a yoga teacher to touch or “adjust” your head in any posture- especially when you are in savasana, relaxing with your eyes closed. There is one lineage that is notorious for this “assist”- just say NO!

19 Comments leave one →
  1. June 4, 2012 5:23 am

    Glad to hear that you are feeling better sounds like you had a serious surgery.

    This looks very tempting and thank you very much for the tip about the buttermilk.

    • June 4, 2012 8:40 am

      it was a VERY serious surgery. but i can already tell it made a big difference.
      thanks for your kind wishes.

  2. June 4, 2012 7:11 am

    Hope you’re healing well and feel much better soon. Love fried tomatoes and only tried them for the first time a couple of years ago.

    • June 4, 2012 8:39 am

      thanks so much. and yes, the FGT’s make it much better. 😉

  3. June 4, 2012 9:01 am

    Those are gorgeous! Did you grow the tomatoes? Your “no sauce” stance interested me – in New Orleans they serve FGT topped with crabmeat and remoulade sauce. Perhaps I could tempt you?

    • June 4, 2012 9:07 am

      hi Laura, i grew those little ‘maters that are decorating the plate, but those are $50. tomatoes from Revival. 😉

  4. June 4, 2012 5:38 pm

    Sounds like you have gone through a lot lately, I am glad all is well. Your photo is beautiful, makes me want to eat some green tomatoes. I have never had them, I will give your recipe a try! Stay well!

    • June 5, 2012 9:23 am

      ohmigoodness! “git yerself to the kitchen rite now!” 😉
      you really do need to try these, yummy yummy yummy!

    • June 5, 2012 10:01 pm

      you will love them jane… i’m sure of it! and thanks so much for the kind words!

  5. Jeffrey permalink
    June 5, 2012 3:31 am

    I am glad your surgery went well and I hope your recovery is quick. I would say those those look like tasty tomatoes, but someone might take that the wrong way, my dear!

    • June 5, 2012 9:22 am

      Jeffery, you have been a long time friend of my tomatoes…. especially when they were 105f!! thanks for the sweet message!

  6. June 5, 2012 5:54 pm

    I am very happy to hear the surgery went well, Darla and you are on the mend… I’m sure your FGT’s will speed the healing process!

    I love fried green tomatoes and will definitely have to try your recipe. Tina and I have been together almost six years and I still haven’t gotten her to try them. Maybe your recipe will be the ‘one’?

    Take care, sweetie! 🙂

    • June 5, 2012 10:00 pm

      😉 she must not be a southern girl!
      and thanks for the good wishes.

  7. June 5, 2012 5:55 pm

    Oh…. great pics too! 😀

  8. June 5, 2012 7:43 pm

    Darla,

    We’re glad you are feeling better. We’d like to sink our teeth into this fried green tomatoes!
    Bella and DiDi

  9. June 6, 2012 2:05 pm

    Sorry to hear youve had to have surgery but glad to hear you are on the end. Today was my first day back in the kitchen after an operation on my back also…feels good doesnt it?! I LOVE fried green tomatoes so thank you so much for sharing this recipe 🙂 I will have to introduce it to my British friends

    • June 6, 2012 3:01 pm

      seriously? good God, what a coincidence! I hope you are doing well and are on the mend!

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