Wednesday Food: (Beer) Fried Green Tomatoes
End of August is the perfect time for vine-ripened tomatoes. My tomato plants are healthy and plentiful, but few fruits have ripened. This is maddening. I had planned to share with you a recipe for tomato consomme, a sophisticated and laborious dish that renders the essence of tomato flavor, unripened tomatoes won’t do.
I’d never had fried green tomatoes but it seemed a promising way to take advantage of some of the tens of pounds of verdant orbs taunting me. So the first and only version I’ve had of this dish was the vegan beer-battered fried green tomatoes from One Green Planet. In lieu of egg wash as adhesive for the flour, they recommend dark beer. Hefeweizen or a Belgian Wit would do nicely, anything that favors bright citrus or sweetness over hops. Because the beer is used predominately for moisture and not flavor you could likewise employ a basic lager and save your shmancy summer imports for sipping.
They taste close to what I anticipated– mild but tart, maybe not as assertive as I expected. Between the flesh of the tomato and crispy cornmeal a full range of textures are offered. For dipping, a yogurt basil sauce brings out the acidity and freshness of the tomato. With a platter of similar garden goods– stuffed squash blossoms for instance– they’d round out the company. It’s no deep-fried butter but, well, thank god for that.
I also pickled green tomatoes but I’m waiting a little longer to try them and suspect the recipe will need tweaking. What have you been eating to close out the summer? Is it business as usual or are you enjoying veg at the top of its game?
My only stuffed squash blossom contender…
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