I love a little side of history when I am serving up a dish with roots as deep as Fried Green Tomatoes. With the exception of grits and hominy, what's more southern than this all-over crunchy firm tomato that’s been battered into a deep-fried delicacy? Even though deep-frying makes almost everything taste better, this dish stands out. The tartness of the tomato and the sweet cornmeal of the crust are a perfect combination--especially for tomato lovers like me.
Of course, they’re southern to the core, aren't they? There was that whole movie “Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café”. Set in Alabama, this feel good film from 1991 was among the first ‘chick flicks’ and a huge hit. I wanted to read up on the origin of the dish itself. There on the website of the Smithsonian Institution, of all places, a woman named Lisa Bramen described her first encounters with Fried Green Tomatoes. She too remembered the movie. In the late 1990s, she tasted her first Fried Green Tomato in New Orleans. So impressed was she that, on a southern road trip, she asked for them everywhere she went. Strangely, only once, in Memphis TN, did she encounter a pale imitation of what she had tasted in New Orleans.