Fried green tomatoes isn’t just the name of a movie starring Kathy Bates. It is also a Southern style delicacy. Just ask anybody who has eaten at Justines’s in Charleston, South Carolina.
There, four slices on a plate will set you back several dollars.
I grew up dining on the usual Southern-fried fare. We fried steak as well as chicken, squash, okra, and tomatoes. Elvis Presley was famous for frying peanut butter and banana sandwiches in butter. And even herbs and blossoms could be doused into hot oil and come out tasting like ambrosia.
The one thing I never liked about frying was the mess. Splattered oil would cover the stove top. Yikes.
But I discovered a way to fry things while avoiding the oil slick. I fry in the oven. Yes, a little oil in the pan, washed and sliced vegetables dredged in a flour/cornmeal/seasonings mixture, and placed in the oven at 425 degrees Fahrenheit returns crispy disks of vegetables minus the mess. And you don’t have to stand over the stove.
However, for all of the deep fried, pan fried or oven fried goodness of the south, one cooking show hostess has us all topped. Nigella Lawson – the lovely British brunette – fries candy bars.
I’m not kidding. I’ve seen her dip Mars bars and snickers bars in batter and then into a deep fryer. The result? Ooey, gooey, toasted warm, visually amazing looking desserts that I have never been able to convince myself to try.
But, I can tell you that a slice of a fried green tomato is wonderful and a trip back into my childhood.
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