Monday, August 23, 2010

Fried Green Tomato BLT

I had fried green tomatoes one time. I was in New Orleans and newly vegan and I was meeting a group of people at a restaurant that had exactly one vegetarian thing on the menu (but, happily, there was plenty of vegan food elsewhere on the trip). I knew that it probably wasn't vegan, but I decided ignorance was bliss and ordered the fried green tomatoes. I may have been a bad vegan, but it was indeed bliss. I've been thinking about them ever since.

So, when I spied green tomatoes at our CSA's farm stand, I knew it was time to make some. Then, when we walked by a restaurant in Fort Collins serving a fried green tomato BLT, I thought it might be my destiny. That sounded a lot like my food soulmate. The only problem: I just started a diet. And, I'm pretty sure that fried green tomatoes and sandwiches loaded with vegenaise are not on the Body for Life  plan. So, I waited until my free day.

And by was it worth the wait. It was also so filling that my free day consisted of a bagel sandwich for breakfast, the BLT, and a teensy-tiny amount of panang curry for dinner--so full was I from that sandwich. I can't wait to have them again.
That fried stuff in the foreground? Deep fried avocado slices.

The Fried Green Tomatoes
3 Large Green Tomatoes, sliced about 1/2 an inch thick
1 1/2 c soy milk
1 1/2 t apple cider vinegar
1 c flour
1/2 c corn meal
2 t garlic powder
1 t salt
Peanut oil for frying

Lay tomatoes in a colander and sprinkle with salt. let sweat for about 30 minutes while you prepare everything else. Whisk together soy milk and vinegar. Set aside to curdle. Combine the corn meal, flour garlic powder, and salt in a long shallow container. Mix well. Whisk in soy milk mixture to your desired consistency.

Fill a frying pan about 1/2 inch deep with peanut oil and heat over medium high heat. While the oil is heating up, gently pat dry the tomatoes with a paper towel, getting them as dry as possible. Test the oil by dropping a small amount of better in the oil. It should sizzle and begin to turn brown. Coat 3 slices of tomato in the batter and drop into oil. Flip when the bottom half is a nice caramel brown color and cook until both sides are that color. Remove from oil and place on a paper towel-covered plate. Continue with all the tomato slices.

A note: This is way too much batter for 3 tomatoes, but I didn't want to worry about running out of batter or having to scrape it together. Plus, I didn't want to do the math, but I think you'd have just enough if you cut the batter recipe in half. Or you could fry whatever you have lying around, which is what I did with that avocado.

Also: This batter was great. It had nice crunch. It stuck and stayed together well--no eggs necessary. And could be used on any number of things, like zucchini. 

The Sandwich
2 pieces of soft sandwich bread (I used light rye)
3 fried green tomatoes
3 slices of tempeh bacon
3 leaves romaine, chopped
2 slices of tomato

I'm sure you can figure this part out.


Cassie - Vegan Fox said...

THis sounds amazing! I've been thinking a lot about fried green tomatoes, but we keep passing them up. We have been eating a lot of okra, though :)

radioactivegan said...

I love fried green tomatoes. I've never put them in a sandwich though ... I feel a grocery trip coming on!