The Garden Lady on preserving harvest and fried green tomatoes

July is a time we go into survival mode for our gardens, watering them carefully and consistently, because rain, although forcasted, is never certain. One thing is for sure, this time of year in Texas we all have plenty of okra and tomatoes to go around, and around, and around. Canning, pickling, frying, dehydrating, and freezing are some of the options for the abundance. Or marry the two in a gumbo! And don’t forget the option to grill okra, Rosemary Veggie Skewers. Yum! For some reason I can’t get fried green tomatoes out of my mind right now, pass the homemade buttermilk ranch dressing, please.

Summer squash is another one that I hear people saying, “I’ve got squash running out of my ears!” The pickle it, fry it, dehydrate it, freeze it methods apply here too. There is also the ever famous zucchini bread, or check out my recipe for Tomato and Zucchini Salad.

If after using the above methods for your abundant harvest you still have some left over, how about share it?  The Well, based out of Cliff Temple Baptist Church would be happy to take fresh produce donations.

Fried Green Tomatoes (make your buttermilk ranch dressing in advance and refrigerate)
4 green tomatoes, cut in half-inch slices
1 egg
½ cup milk, I use buttermilk
½ cup flour
½ cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
olive oil, enough to cover the bottom of your pan
On one plate, place half the flour. In a shallow bowl mix your egg and milk. On a second, plate mix the remaining flour, cornmeal, sea salt, garlic powder, and ground pepper. Put your olive oil in your pan and get it hot enough to fry. For each tomato slice, coat both sides in the flour, then dip in the egg/milk mix, next dredge through the cornmeal mix, and then put in the pan. Fry on each side approximately two-three minutes or until both sides are golden. Plate, get out your buttermilk ranch and enjoy!


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