Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fried Green Tomatoes with Homemade Garlic-Basil Mayonnaise

I'm not usually one to watch the same movie over and over again, but the movie Fried Green Tomatoes is a special exception.  I admit to being somewhat of a feminist and I love the strength and confidence of the women in this movie.  Fried Green Tomatoes is a movie about friendship, both old and new, and the importance and influence a good friendship can have on our lives. 
"I found out what the secret to life is: friends. Best Friends." - Ninny Threadgoode

One cannot watch the movie Fried Green Tomatoes without getting a craving for some.  With loads of green tomatoes in my garden, fried green tomatoes were an obvious choice.  When I went out to pick the tomatoes I noticed that my basil plant was growing out of control and needed a good trim.  After trimming the basil back I decided to make an Italian version of fried green tomatoes.  I added some chopped basil and Parmesan cheese to the panko mixture and then decided to make a homemade garlic-basil mayonnaise for dipping.  Every once in awhile I have a genius idea like that!

I fried ten thick slices of tomatoes until they were perfectly golden and placed them on a platter beside the homemade mayonnaise.  I nonchalantly picked one up, bit into it, and was completely amazed by how wonderful it was.  Perfectly crunchy, with loads of flavor from the basil and Parmesan, and also nice and meaty.  The thick slices of tomato really held up well to the frying.  These Italian-seasoned fried green tomatoes were perfect on their own, but were absolutely phenomenal once dipped in the homemade garlic-basil mayonnaise.  My Mom and I ate all ten slices with wild abandon.  After stuffing ourselves with fried green tomatoes we made a plan to stay out of the backyard.  It could be dangerous to the waistline.

"Oh, what I wouldn't give for a plate of fried green tomatoes like we used to have at the cafe. Ooh"- Ninny Threadgoode

  Fried Green Tomatoes
original recipe 
Serves 2-4, depending on appetite

2 medium-sized green tomatoes, cut thickly (about 5 slices per tomato)
About 1-1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
About 2 cups panko
1/2 cups Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 cup chopped basil
salt and pepper to season
canola oil, for frying
cast iron skillet preferable

Place the flour, beaten egg, and panko in three separate trays for dipping/breading.  Heavily season the the flour, egg, and panko with salt and pepper.  Add the grated Parmesan cheese and the chopped basil to the panko and stir.  Dip each tomato slice into flour, then egg, then panko.  Place each coated slice on a baking tray and when each slice is breaded then place the entire baking tray in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.  (This is a tip I learned from Tyler Florence.  Anytime he adds a breading to something he allows it to "dry out" in the refrigerator.  This procedure helps the breading to adhere better once it hits the heat of the skillet. I use this tip all the time when breading.)  Fry up to 3 slices at a time on medium heat, remembering not to crowd the pan.  Each slice needs about 2-3 minutes per side.  Drained the fried green tomatoes on paper towels and allow to cool slightly before serving.  Sprinkle with additional basil and Parmesan prior to serving.

 Garlic-Basil Mayonnaise
Adapted from Farm to Fork by Emeril Lagasse
Makes 1-1/2 cups

1 large egg, at room temp
1 large egg yolk, at room temp
1-1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
1/4 teaspoon pepper or cayenne pepper, or more to taste
1 cup canola oil
1/4 olive oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

Add the egg, egg yolk, lemon juice, mustard garlic, salt and pepper to the bowl of a food processor or blender and blend for 1 minute until smooth, light yellow, and froth, about 1 minute.  While the processor/blender is still running, combine the canola oil and olive oil in a measuring cup with a pour spout, and working very slowly, add the oil to the processor in a thin, steady stream, processing until the oil is completely incorporated and a thick emulsion is formed (It is very important that the oil is added slowly, especially at the beginning; otherwise the mayonnaise may break).

Transfer the mayo to a nonreactive bowl, stir in the chopped basil, add more salt, pepper, and/or lemon juice to season.  Use immediately, or refrigerate in a nonreactive airtight container for up to a 1 day.

I am submitting this post to Food 'n Flix which is being hosted by Glennis at Can't Believe We Ate.
I am also submitting this to Michelle of Ms. enPlace for her Garden Variety Wednesday event.


  1. This is so pretty. Looks good nestled in that basket, is that what it is, a basket? Well, I checked this movie out twice this month and never got a chance to watch it so.........I am not playing this round. I like your post, Kim

  2. Yes! This is eating at it's best. Nothing like homemade mayonnaise and then you add fried green tomatoes - now you're taking. Your photos are lovely Kim. I've never have seen fried tomatoes look so beautiful.

  3. I love how you gave them an Italian twist.

  4. Great idea to make Italian fried green tomatoes. I bet the garlic basil mayo is awesome. And put the two together...yum!

    I agree with Sam. I've never seen fried green tomatoes look so nice.

    Can you believe I've never seen this movie. Ooops!

    Thanks for linking with GVW. I'm happy to have a Kim original as part of the round-up!

  5. I love me some fried green tomatoes! I have an entire garden full just begging to be treated like this. The mayo rocks!

  6. Kim, these fried green tomatoes look divine. I love the twist on a southern classic with basil. Delicious.

    I really enjoyed the movie too-It served up poetic justice too (literally, laugh).


    The Wordless Wednesday photo was taken in Croatia. Croatia is a new country born from civil war with its Bosnian and Serb neighbors. They are proof that a country can find peace and common ground even among their differences.

  7. I've never had fried green tomatoes. I've never seen Fried Green Tomatoes but you've never steered me wrong. Like the Tyler Florence tip - it makes sense - and now - I'm just i the mood for that stuff!

  8. I had fried green tomatoes at Bobby Flay's restaurant last year and fell in love. It's definitely a very good thing I'm not growing a tomato tree! Otherwise I'd be running to the kitchen to make this!

  9. wow kim I want some of your fried green tomatoes they look amazing thanks for your kind support means the world to me

  10. Don't laugh at me, but I didn't really even know there really were such a thing as green tomatoes. Are they just unripened red tomatoes? I'll have to look for them at the store.

  11. I have always wanted to try fried green tomatoes. I just know I would love them. These look completely fabulous!
    *kisses* HH

  12. Oh my gosh...your fried green tomatoes look amazing! I love the mayo, too. Pass me a big ol' plate full ;)

  13. Hey Kim! I'm finally following you! ;) The fried green tomatoes look awesome and by the way I love that movie!

  14. hi kim, this looks so appetizing, never tried anything like it before.
    i love basil, mayo and tomatoes.. am gonna try this-thanks
    glad i blog walk to your site.. hi, i am Wan, from malaysia, do visit my blog , would love to read a comment from you too. have a nice day

  15. I really wanted to get my hands on some green tomatoes. Yours are absolutely gorgeous and that mayo looks wonderful. Loving all of the basil. ;-)

  16. Kim, I've never seen the original recipe for FGT's, so thanks for sharing that. Couldn't get mine done in time for this month's movie and altho I made FGT's last year, Italian style, I didn't feel that it was right to submit an old post when it wasn't indicated to be able to do so. I'm printing off this classic recipe in 3 seconds!

  17. That movie doesn't make me crave fried green just makes me NOT want to eat BBQ, lol.


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