I’ve posted about frying green tomatoes before, but I recently reread Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe and decided that this time I would use Fannie Flagg’s recipe from the back of the book (page 403).
Michelle picked the tomatoes from her garden, so they were particularly good.
Fried Green Tomatoes Fannie Flagg Style
1 medium green tomato per person
Slice tomatoes about 1/4 inch thick. Season each side with salt and pepper and then coat both sides with cornmeal. In a large skillet, heat enough bacon drippings to cover the bottom of the pan and fry tomatoes until lightly browned on both sides. If you don’t have bacon drippings (and, why not?), use vegetable shortening to fry them in.
As Fannie Flagg wrote, “You’ll think you died and gone to heaven!”
My friend Beth gave me this recipe and it is rather delicious. I did cut the butter and Worcestershire sauce amounts down a bit (but not too much). I served them with roast chicken and mashed sweet potatoes for a tasty, tasty dinner.
Creole Glazed Mushrooms
1 lb button mushrooms
12 tablespoons (1 and 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Creole seasoning (I prefer a lower salt version)
hot sauce to taste
Toss mushrooms in melted butter. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine. Simmer, covered for 20 minutes.
A lovely side dish to accompany the Apple Cider Roasted Chicken recipe I posted yesterday. You want to make sure you have equal amounts of sweet potato and apple and to make a smaller dice than you see in the picture.
Apple, Sweet Potato and Bacon Deliciousness
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
4 to 6 slices thick cut bacon, diced
1 large onion, diced
2 Granny Smith apples, cored and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
In a large bowl, add the sweet potatoes, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Toss to coat and arrange them on a baking sheet. Roast the sweet potatoes until they are soft but not mushy, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and reserve.
Add the bacon to a large skillet and place over medium heat. When the bacon has started to get crispy and brown, add the onions, season with salt and sauté until the onions are translucent and aromatic. Add the apples and sauté for about 10 minutes or until they soften. Stir in the sweet potatoes and the cinnamon and sugar. Sauté until the sweet potatoes are cooked through and starting to become crispy, about 7 to 8 minutes. Taste for seasonings.
Herbes de Provence is a seasoning blend featuring many of the herbs which grow abundantly in the Provence region of southeast France. The blend typically includes lavender, savory, rosemary, marjoram and thyme. Some blends also include fennel seeds, sage and tarragon.
As can be expected, it goes well with poultry and vegetables. Tonight’s dinner is a roasted chicken served with potatoes and zucchini, all liberally sprinkled with Herbes de Provence.
Herbes de Provence Roasted Chicken, Potatoes and Zucchini
5 lb whole chicken
3 to 4 good sized potatoes
2-3 medium sized green zucchinis
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons dried Herbes de Provence
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Using scissors, cut out backbone from chicken and press down to flatten slightly. Rinse off and pat dry.
In a mortar and pestle, combine the salt, pepper and Herbes de Provence. Crush together until well mixed and highly fragrant.
On a mandoline slicer, cut the potatoes into 1/8 inch rounds and the zucchini 1/4 inch rounds. If using a starchy potato like a Russet or Idaho, rinse the potato rounds in cool water, then drain before next step. Waxy potatoes like Yukon golds or red potatoes don’t really need to be rinsed. Place potatoes and zucchinis in a large mixing bowl with all but a tablespoon of the olive oil. Sprinkle a quarter of the herb mix over the veggies and toss to combine. Set out the rounds in rows on a rimmed baking sheet, alternating potato and zucchini. Roast on the lower rack of the oven for 45 minutes or until soft and tender.
Use remaining tablespoon of oil to coat the chicken. Sprinkle around a quarter of the remaining herb mix over both sides of the chicken. Set the chicken breast side up on a roasting pan. Roast for one hour or until thigh temperature is 170 degrees F.
Store leftover herb mix in an airtight container for later use.
Michelle made 17 half pint jars of pepper jelly the other day and had some jalapeño peppers left over. We didn’t want to have to fry anything so we looked for jalapeño popper recipes that roasted or baked them instead. One of the ones we found was this one from Rachel Ray. It provided a good stepping off point for the ones we ended up making and then enjoying out by the pool with our mojitos.
Roasted Jalapeño Poppers
12 jalapeno peppers
¼ cup onion, chopped very fine
5 strips of bacon, cooked and chopped pretty fine
1 package cream cheese, softened
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic salt
Cut one third off lengthwise from each jalapeño pepper. Scrape out all the seeds and ribs from each jalapeño with a spoon. Mince the small pieces of pepper. Coat the larger pieces (from here on out called jalapeño pepper boats) with olive oil and place on a baking sheet.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Combine minced jalapeño pepper, onion, bacon, cream cheese, ¾ cups cheddar cheese, cumin and garlic salt in a mixing bowl. Stir well. Taste for seasonings before spreading into jalapeño boats. Sprinkle a little extra cheddar cheese on top.
Roast for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the peppers are tender and the cheese is brown at the edges and bubbly. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before eating or you’ll burn your mouth!
A decadently rich accompaniment to most any meal is creamed corn. This version is very simple but very, very good.
Corn Off the Cob with Sour Cream
5 to 6 ears corn on the cob
4 tablespoons butter
1 onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup sour cream
Cut the kernels from the corn, making sure to milk the cob by running the back of the blade down each cob to get all the yummy juice.
Heat the butter in a medium cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add in the onion and sauté until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the corn and cook through, about 5 minutes.
Pour in the sour cream and stir well. Add in the salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Taste for seasonings and serve.
I confess that many times, I will just use a box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix as a short cut for a quick and delicious corn casserole (recipe courtesy of Paula Deen). Tonight, I decided to go a slightly different route. I used corn put up from Michelle’s Grandpa’s farm along with bacon, onion and bell peppers to make one helluva good side dish.
Skillet Corn Casserole
4-6 slices bacon
1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
3 1/2 to 4 cups fresh or frozen whole kernel corn (or 2 cans 12 to 16 ounces each, drained)
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
In a large skillet, fry bacon until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet, crumble and set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoon of drippings, drain off the rest.
Sauté onion in drippings until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Add bell pepper, flour and seasonings. Stirring regularly, sauté until the flour taste has cooked off, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in sour cream until smooth. Add corn, half of the bacon and about half of the cheese. Mix well.
Sprinkle top with remaining cheese and then the bacon. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 20 minutes or until heated through.