Here’s how to Extend the Season with Fried Green Tomatoes
Photo: Liz Rueven

Here’s how to Extend the Season with Fried Green Tomatoes

There’s something glorious about ripe juicy tomatoes during summers in New England. As soon as the spring soil warms, we hurry to grow them in pots on city terraces and in patches in our home gardens. Somehow, though, as soon as the season gets going, we sense that it is fleeting.

Once October arrives and lush tomatoes are a not-too-distant memory, I jump on the opportunity to unlock the secrets of firm green tomatoes. While they can be pickled, grilled, pureed for ketchup or chopped for salsa, it’s simply fried green tomatoes that have seduced me since the 1991 award winning movie, Fried Green Tomatoes.

If you haven’t seen this award winning tearjerker, you must.

Fried Green Tomatoes Kosher Like Me

A few years ago, I was surprised to learn that green tomatoes are not a a special variety; they are simply unripe tomatoes. While eating them raw is not very enticing, a simple coating of corn meal and a quick fry results in a whole new take on everyone’s favorite summer fruit.

Today’s play on fried green tomatoes balances the slightly astringent quality of these beauties with the creamy sweetness of lush burrata cheese. The coating of corn meal, flour and egg lends a crispness that contrasts well with the unique texture of ripe figs.

Yes, this is an indulgence.

But just as the summer season for tomatoes is fleeting, the moment to enjoy green tomatoes will be gone by the time chilling winds arrive for Thanksgiving.

fried green tomatoes October harvest
Photo: Liz Rueven

For those looking to waste less food these firm and slightly tangy slices of summer’s last licks are well worth the kitchen splatter. For the rest of you farmers’ market enthusiasts, your farmers will love you for embracing this stage by rescuing tomatoes from the compost bin.

green tomatoes in October
Photo: Liz Rueven

Thank you to Patti Popp, farmer at Sport Hill Farm in Easton, CT and Lori Cochran Dougall, Director of Westport Farmers’ Market, who introduced me to the wonders of green tomatoes.

For my initial play on Fried Green Tomatoes with a more traditional spicy mayonnaise, click here. If you fry up a batch and unlock the secrets of these underripe tomatoes, we’d love to hear about how you make them.


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