Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Fried Green Tomatoes

Using the mantra of green = unripe, I never touched home-grown tomatoes until they became red, that was of course until the early 1990’s when the film ‘Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe’ came on our screens and I was introduced to the culinary use of these unripen fruits.

The original recipe uses bacon fat and cornmeal which I omit to make it a vegetarian dish, but using a nice simple combination of seasonings, I was amazed at how tasty they were when cooked and not at all bitter as you would expect with unripened fruits.

You can check with your local greengrocer if they will provide you with green tomatoes and if not, growing your own is probably the most practical way of having your own supply.

Using salad or beef tomato types, I pick them when they have grown to size, but not yet ripened.  I cut them into thick slices (much thicker than for a sandwich) and then fry them in oil with seasoning and they make a great side dish or stand-alone snack.  If you want a taste of the Deep South that echoes the film, then sprinkle on some Cajun spice powder. (See recipe below).

So now as my tomato crops come into harvest, I no longer have to wait until they turn red for my fix; and I can enjoy my fried green tomatoes whilst enjoying watching Kathy Bates & co on DVD making their version at the Whistle Stop Cafe.

Fried Green Tomatoes

Ingredients (Serves 2 or 4 if served as a side dish)
  • 4 large green tomatoes (standard salad tomato size)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt (or sea salt) 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Optional: Cajun Spice powder
  • Vegetable oil for frying
1. Slice tomatoes 1/2 inch thick.
2. In a large frying pan, heat the vegetable oil over a medium heat.
3. Place tomatoes into the frying pan and season with salt, pepper and Cajun powder (if using).
4. When the tomatoes are browned, flip and fry them on the other side.
5.  Serve as an accompaniment for a meal or as a snack.



  1. I'm convinced! And inspired - I'm trying to redden up some home-grown toms on the window sill at the moment, but now I might just eat them! :)

    1. Hi Kaye!! That's very kind of you, thank you! I hope you get chance to try and enjoy them. I'd love to hear how you got on, let me know! Best wishes, Anna