Every Sunday, my grandmother- Nana - used to make fried green tomatoes, biscuits and cheese grits. She was an amazing cook. Unfortunately, she passed away when I was 9, but I still remember those meals, and have done my best to recreate them over the years. I don't make fried green tomatoes too often, though I always wonder why that is when I take my first bite...
We have been eating our weight in tomato sandwiches this summer. There are so many wonderful variations: tomatoes placed between slices of fresh bread drizzled with olive oil, with a sprinkling of salt and fresh cracked pepper; caprese with fresh mozzarella and basil; roasted zucchini, heirloom cherry tomatoes and fresh sliced tomatoes; and so on. It was only a natural progression to make one from fried green tomatoes.
Fried Green Tomato Sandwich
1 medium sized green tomato (or enough to make 8 -10 slices, 1/4 inch thick each)
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
olive oil for pan
8 slices of bread (I used the ciabatta I made over the weekend)
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 tablespoons goat cheese
12 medium sized basil leaves
fresh cracked pepper to taste (optional)
To make the fried green tomatoes:
Heat about 3-4 tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet. Mix flour, cornmeal and salt in a large shallow bowl/plate. Slice tomato into 1/4 inch pieces. Cover each slice in egg white, then dredge in the cornmeal mixture. When pan is hot, lay as many tomatoes in the pan as will fit. Cook until crispy and brown, 3-4 minutes. Flip, and brown the other side. Remove from pan and place on paper towel to absorb excess oil. Repeat until all tomato slices are done.
While tomatoes are cooking, drizzle approximately 1/4 teaspoon olive oil on each slice of bread. If you're using pepper, now is the time to add it. Cover one slice per sandwich with fresh basil leaves - about 3 leaves should do it. When tomatoes are ready, lay them on top of the basil - two slices should do it. Spoon goat cheese on top of the tomatoes - about 1 tablespoon per sandwich - and spread it with your fingers (or a knife if you must) so it covers them. Top with the other piece of bread, and enjoy!
This sandwich is certainly something Nana never prepared, but I think she would have approved. It is perhaps the most delicious sandwich I have ever eaten. I only wish I had discovered it earlier in tomato season!