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This is a great southern recipe that is delicious all by itself, eaten with your hands, in just a couple bites.
But you also may serve fried green tomatoes as an appetizer or as a surprise under a juicy burger. Turn them into their own sandwich by layering onto chewy pretzel bread or a flaky biscuit with a smear of remoulade sauce. Make them the base of a superfresh salad with fresh citrus and a handful of simply dressed greens. Or, finish a platter of fried green tomatoes with crumbled sausage and some chopped fresh parsley for a hearty side to ribs hot off the grill.
Yield: 12 slices , Prep time: 20 minutes , Cook time: 10 minutes
1. First, clean your green tomatoes, and cut them into ½-inch-thick slices. (You don’t want to slice them too thinly or they’ll become mush once they are cooked.) Discard the core and the base of the tomatoes.
2. Create three stations for breading your tomatoes: one with flour, salt and pepper, another with buttermilk and hot sauce, and another with cornmeal, paprika and ground mustard.
3. To a large saute pan, add enough oil to be about 1/3 - 1/2 up the sides of the pan. Preheat to medium-high heat.
4. While waiting for your oil to heat (you'll know it's hot enough when a sprinkle of cornmeal rises to the top and begins cooking), dredge your tomatoes first in the flour, then in the buttermilk, and finally in the cornmeal. Lower immediately into the hot oil.
5. Flip the tomatoes after the first sides are golden brown. After both sides are browned, remove from the oil, and let drain on paper towels.
**The tomatoes can be sliced and seasoned beforehand but if you bread them too early the crust will become mushy. For the crispiest results, 3-step-bread the tomatoes just before frying them.
**When frying, the more you place in the pan the lower the temperature will get, so don’t overcrowd the pan. Also, allow a couple more minutes for the second batch of slices as the temperature of the oil fluctuates with the movement in the pan. More than anything, stay on top of the tomatoes as they fry.