Recipe: Fried Green Tomato BLTs

Tomato takes center stage in this dish
Recipe: Fried Green Tomato BLTs
Photo by Julie Andrews

One of the most exciting times of summer for a gardener is when the tomatoes start popping up on the vine. I let most of my tomatoes turn bright shades of red, orange and yellow, but I always grab a few when they’re green, plump and just a bit tart. They make the perfect feature ingredient in a BLT, especially when they’re coated with flour, dipped in egg, dusted in crisp breadcrumbs or cornmeal and baked until golden brown. And don’t forget thick slices of crispy bacon, a generous smear of real mayonnaise and a handful of tender greens (and sometimes in Wisconsin, cheese). It makes for the best meal after a full day of tending to the garden under a hot summer sun.

Recipe: Fried Green Tomato BLTs

Ingredients

2 large green tomatoes, sliced 1/2-inch thick
Coarse salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper, divided
2 large eggs, beaten
2 Tbsp. milk
1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
8-12 slices bacon
8 slices sourdough bread
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup greens (arugula, spinach, lettuce)
2 ripe red tomatoes, sliced 1/2-inch thick

Instructions

1. Line green tomatoes on a kitchen towel. Sprinkle generously with salt and let sit 10 minutes. Pat tomatoes dry with paper towels.
2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat a baking sheet fitted with a wire rack with cooking spray. Set aside.
3. Place flour in a small bowl and toss with half the black pepper. In another small bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Place breadcrumbs in a third small bowl and toss with remaining pepper and a pinch of salt.
4. Dip green tomato slices in flour, then egg wash, then Panko. Place on baking sheet with fitted rack, 1 inch apart. Coat top of tomatoes with cooking spray. Bake 10 minutes, then flip. Coat with cooking spray and bake 10 additional minutes. Turn oven to a low broil and cook two more minutes, until browned and crispy. Flip again and broil other side for two minutes, until browned and crispy. Remove from oven and allow to slightly cool.
5. In the meantime, cook bacon in a skillet until crispy. Place on a paper towel.
6. Toast sourdough bread, then spread one side of each piece with mayonnaise. Arrange greens on four pieces, then top with fried green tomatoes, bacon, and red tomato slices. Top with other slice of bread to make four sandwiches.
Serves 4

Julie Andrews is a registered dietitian and culinary-school-trained chef who loves sharing fresh, wholesome food recipes on her food blog, The Gourmet RD.

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