If you haven’t had a true fried green tomato in the summertime, you don’t know what you’re missing. Traditionally, fried green tomatoes are made with under ripe tomatoes, but in my recipe — I used a green varietal tomato that was a little more plump and flavorful, yet still firm to the touch. Dousing each tomato slice in a bath of egg wash and then, a flour cornmeal mixture is a classic touch, and a shallow fry in a skillet in a bit of oil remains standard. However, a layer of creamy ricotta cheese with flecks of lemon zest spread upon toasted Squaw Bread (a darker rye molasses loaf) turns tradition into something delightfully different.
These fried green tomato toasts are not only incredibly easy to put together – less than 20 minutes, but they have fresh summer taste. The crunchy cornmeal crusted tomatoes that rest upon whole milk lemony ricotta cheese and crispy toast make a great appetizer, or lighter meal on a hot evening. You don’t heat up the kitchen very much with just a quick fry in a pan, and clean-up is a breeze. You can double or triple the recipe for larger gatherings.
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 large egg
1 large slightly firm green tomato, any variety
2/3 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 large slices Squaw bread or other rustic loaf
3 sprigs dill, oregano or basil
salt & pepper
1/4 cup of vegetable oil for frying
- In one small bowl – add egg and 1 tablespoon water, whisk. In another bowl- add flour, cornmeal, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pinch of black pepper, stir. Set aside.
- Slice tomato into 1/4 inch thick pieces. Dip each tomato slice into egg wash, then cornmeal coating. Repeat until all slices are coated, reserve on a plate.
- In a large non-stick skillet, add oil and heat for 2 minutes. Fry tomatoes on first side for 2-3 minutes, flip and fry for 1 1/2 minutes, or until light golden brown. Remove and place on paper towel lined plate. Sprinkle with salt.
- Toast bread in toaster or under broiler. Mix ricotta, lemon zest and pinch of salt and pepper in small bowl. Spread ricotta on bread slices. Top with fried green tomatoes. Top with fresh herbs, I used dill.
- Slice in half and serve. Enjoy!