The other day, I woke up to the sight of an Early Girl in distress. The tomato plant was snapped and fallen, brought back to the dirt by its own weight. The cage I had built offered little support against the heft of its fruit, and branches and leaves had returned to the earth with the force of a heavy gust.
The plant I mourned quickly, clearing its patch of dirt, unstaking its cage, and bringing its remains to nourish the compost heap. But the windfallen tomatoes were not so easy to let go. I gathered them in my shirt, dusting them off and admiring their color. Surely, there was some other way to enjoy these fruits that were not yet blushing.
Beyond pickling, the most common remedy I'd heard mention of was frying. I cracked an egg, made a whole wheat, cornmeal, and salt and pepper rub, and threw some bacon on the griddle. The tiny green warriors I sliced thin into a careful, slender carpaccio of flesh and seed. With a dip in the egg, the batter stuck. I threw in a few slices alongside eggs over easy, and within minutes the kitchen was filled with the sweet aroma of frying fruit.
Strange as it sounds, breakfast was so good, I just might pick a basket green on purpose.
FRIED GREEN TOMATOES
Thinly slice 2 medium sized green tomatoes. Crack an egg into a pie pan and mix with a dash of milk or cream. Make a batter using 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup corn meal, and salt and pepper to taste. Heat up several slices bacon in a frying pan and let cook, leaving fat drippings in pan. Dip green tomato slices first in egg wash, then in batter, and fry in bacon fat until golden on both sides. Serve hot with bacon and eggs for a farmhouse breakfast.