The first time I ever heard about fried green tomatoes was because of the movie by the same name. Before that they had not crossed my radar. Like most things from the south, I was not exposed to them until much later in my adult life. Thank goodness for college, traveling, and cooking shows!
The idea of a fried green tomato intrigued me. The closest thing to it I did have was fried zucchini. There was good fried zucchini and then there was horrible fried zucchini. If you’ve ever had fried zucchini, you know exactly what I’m talking about. I looked into making fried green tomatoes and realized the technique between the two was very similar.
Plus what a great way to use up unripe tomatoes! They are always in abundance come the end of summer, right? Breaded warm tomatoes are amazing, maybe with a little cheese on top and you’ve got a really great side dish.
However I wanted to lighten them up a bit because I don’t like a lot of fried things. I can handle a little but not too much. Since I didn’t want to fry up the tomatoes, how could I make fried green tomatoes unfried?
The solution is simple; a metal cooling rack and a really hot oven.
Andrea’s Unfried Green Tomatoes
- 2 Large Green Tomatoes, sliced thick
- 1/4C Unbleached All-Purpose Flour, plus another 1/4C
- 1/4C-1/2C Breadcrumbs (or cornmeal)
- 1 Large egg, beaten plus some water
- Hot sauce
- Garlic Powder
- Chili Powder
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and place a metal cooling rack on top of that. Spray the cooling rack with oil or nonstick spray.
Get out 3 large bowls and set up a breading station. In one bowl goes 1/4C AP Flour. In another bowl goes the beaten egg with water. To the egg add your hot sauce, and mix a little more. As much hot sauce as you like, just not so much that it makes the egg too liquidy. In the last bowl add in the 1/4C AP flour along with breadcrumbs. Add in seasonings to this bowl, to taste. I like a lot of garlic powder and a touch of chili powder. Mix.
Dip the tomato in the AP flour, then the egg mixture, then the AP flour and breadcrumb mixture. Place on cooling rack. Repeat until all the tomato slices have been breaded. If you need more of any of the ingredients, add along as you go.
Once all the slices are breaded, spray or lightly brush the tops with olive oil. Place in oven and allow to bake for about 10 minutes or until the breadcrumbs are nice and crispy. Remove baking sheet from oven, plate the tomatoes and serve immediately. Enjoy!
They come out crispy every time! They are slightly tangy from the green tomato but have a very savory note because of the seasoned egg mixture and seasoned breadcrumbs. You can use this same method with zucchini as well.
The next time you find yourself with an abundance of green tomatoes give the unfried version a try, I think you’ll be pleased!