Thursday, July 28, 2011

Love Green Tomatoes? Try This

I love the tang of Fried Green Tomatoes . . . but since I’m still trying to lose weight, I’ve done some experimenting and have learned to love them in many other ways, too.

First off, let me share the best way to freeze them for frying later on . . . wash, slice and bread them as you would for frying then place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and freeze overnight or until solid. Once frozen, then you can layer them with waxed paper in between in container or bags and seal them. Use only what you need and fry them frozen rather than thawing first.

Another way to preserve them is to pickle them. Simply follow any recipe for dill pickles and add a small hot pepper to each quart for a little kick if you want to. My family loves dilled green tomatoes and dilled green beans as well.

Now let’s move onto to other ways of enjoying them. One of my favorite summer time dishes is okra, but again, trying to lose weight and eating breaded and fried veggies don’t mix. I spray a large skillet with cooking spray, drizzle in a little olive oil and add a sliced onion or coarsely chopped onion and cut okra. Stir fry for about 5 minutes and then add green tomato wedges. They are done when they begin to get soft (about another 3 to 5 minutes). Sprinkle with kosher salt and mmm, mmm.

We also enjoy them prepared in the same manner with any number of other fresh vegetables . . . cabbage, onions and other veggies turn sweet after cooking and we love the tart tang of green tomatoes. Try adding zucchini, yellow summer squash, eggplant, a little corn cut off the cob . . . whatever you like and enjoy your summer bounty.

Since this is now our preferred method of eating the tomatoes when I canned them earlier today, I diced some and cut some into wedges. I also canned a few of the slices for breading and frying later. They are so tasty because the salt cooks all the way through them.

Canned Green Tomatoes

To can them, follow these easy instructions:

Wash and cut them as desired and fill clean jars, leaving at least half an inch of headspace. Add 1 tsp. canning or pickling salt (or kosher) per quart and ½ tsp. for pints. Pressure cook for 5 minutes at 5 lbs. of pressure.  Enjoy them all winter long.

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