Friday, October 5, 2012

Fried Green Tomatoes with Sun-dried Tomato Aioli


The very first post I ever did on this blog, aside from my spring garden, was for my fried green tomatoes.  I was so proud to finally have my blog up and running and was FILLED with all the stories and recipes I wanted to share.  With my old Cannon point-and-shoot camera that had probably been to Lower Broad one too many times I started taking my pictures to document the process.

When the post was finally completed I was like a kid on Christmas mixed the kid the night before turning in a term paper.  I was so excited to finally have begun this journey I had been contemplated for months, but absolutely 100% terrified of what people would think!

Would people think it simple and boring or would they enjoy the tales behind each recipe as much as I did?  I had no idea what to expect.

Now, 20 months later and 455 post later, I feel like I might have finally caught my stride.  

I am getting a little better with the camera than I was back then.  I am no longer trying to write like someone is going to grade my grammar and for once in my life, I am finally FINALLY letting my true voice be heard. 

I know it is food blogging tabu to post something you have already posted but this is my blog and I will do what I want.  As I didn't want to completely delete the original post here it is should you want to compare.

For a little background on why these are better in the fall than any other time of year, the green tomatoes in the fall have not yet begun to turn red on the inside.  They ripen slower due to the cooling temperature making them a little more firm and much more suitable for frying....just what we like down here in the South!

For an updated version of this fall classic, here you go my dear readers!

Fried Green Tomatoes with 
Sun-dried Tomato Aioli and Feta
for the tomatoes:
Firm Green Tomatoes, sliced in about 1/2-inch slices
buttermilk
Flour
Cornmeal
Emeril's Essence
4 eggs
 Salt and pepper
Crisco or cooking oil
Crumbled Goat Cheese

for the aioli:
1 jar sun-dried tomatoes
1 cup mayonnaise
juice of 1 lemon

Slice the tomatoes and toss them in salt in a colander to release the moisture int he tomatoes. Soak them in buttermilk for several hours or overnight.  

Because I figure "go big or go home" is a motto to live by I fry most things in Crisco, but you can also use vegetable or peanut oil.  It really doesn't matter but I do think they things fry better in Crisco....just my personal opinion!  Heat about 1 inch deep of your oil of choice in a cast iron skillet.  In one bowl combine about a cup of flour, a cup of cornmeal and a tablespoon of Emeril's Essence and stir with a fork.  You will probably need more than this so if you want to be overly generous on those amounts it won't hurt a thing! In a separate bowl create the egg wash by beating 4 eggs together.  

Dip each tomato slice in the egg wash then coat in the cornmeal/flour mixture and place directly into the hot oil.  You don't want to crowd the skillet but I try to fit as many as possible in there mainly because I get tired of standing in the kitchen while everyone else is in the den.  Flip when the bottom side has browned and then remove once it is brown on both sides.  It is very important to cool the tomatoes on a cooling wrap instead of paper towels as this will prevent them from getting soggy!

For the aioli simply combine all ingredients in a blender (minus the oil the tomatoes came in) and blend until smooth.  I typically do this several hours before serving as I think it is better after it sits but that is not a requirement so don't freak out if you have gotten all the way to the bottom of this recipe and think "S*&T! I am serving this in 10 minutes"

Serve with a dollup of aioli and crumble goat cheese!
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