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BLT Salad with Fried Green Tomatoes

I realize green tomatoes are nearly impossible to find, I just happened to luck out today at the farmers market. You can omit the fried green tomatoes and use a sliced red tomato or heirlooms.  If you choose to go the sliced red tomato route, you can omit the cornmeal, flour, eggs and some of the olive oil.  Also, if you don’t want to make your croutons, you can cheat with store bought.  Trader Joe’s has amazing bagged croutons.

Serves 4

For Salad:
  • 1 bag romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 pound bacon, cooked, drained, roughly chopped, and 3 tablespoons grease reserved from pan for dressing (optional)
  • Bacon Chive Vinaigrette
  • Fried Green Tomatoes or sliced red tomatoes
  • Garlic Sourdough Croutons
  • 1 avocado, diced
1.)  In a large bowl, toss together lettuce, bacon, half of the croutons, diced avocado, and half of the vinaigrette.  On a serving plate, lay down two of the fried green tomatoes (or sliced red tomatoes), top with salad and additional dressing if necessary.

For Croutons:

  • 1 small loaf sourdough bread, diced into large cubes
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
1.)  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a large bowl, toss together olive oil, minced garlic, and bread cubes.  Turn out onto large cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes until browned and crispy.  Remove from oven and let cool.
For Fried Green Tomatoes:
  • 2 green tomatoes, sliced 1/2″ thick
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
1.)  In a shallow pie plate combine flour, cayenne, thyme, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.  In another shallow dish, add cornmeal.  In a third shallow dish, beat eggs. Season both sides of the green tomatoes with salt and pepper.  Heat a large saute pan over medium heat and add 1/4 cup canola oil.
2.)  Take one slice of the green tomatoes and dip each side into the seasoned flour.  Dip it into the egg mixture, then into the cornmeal.  Place the slice into the hot oil and fry it for about 2-3 minutes per side until browned.  Remove to a paper towel-lined plate.  Season again lightly with salt.  Repeat with all of the tomato slices.
For Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons reserved bacon grease (optional)
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons minced chives
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
1.)  In a small bowl, combine bacon grease, cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, and chives.  Whisk in olive oil in a slow stream until thickened and emulsified.  Season with salt and pepper.