It wasn’t until Kevin Clark opened Home Grown GA that he came to like this Southern classic, which can easily turn thin and soggy. What’s his secret? Slice the tomatoes no less than ¼ inch thick, then salt and pepper them generously about five minutes before frying. Give the slices several good tosses to evenly distribute the seasoning. And instead of the traditional cornmeal, he uses panko Japanese breadcrumbs.
1 In a medium bowl, whisk 4 large eggs. Place 2 cups panko Japanese breadcrumbs in a second bowl and 2 cups all-purpose flour in a third bowl.
2 Pour ½ inch canola oil into a cast-iron skillet. Line a baking sheet with paper towels and set it next to the skillet.
3 Trim ½ inch off the stem end of 4 medium green tomatoes. Cut tomatoes into ¼-inch slices and place in large bowl. Sprinkle 2 tsp. kosher salt and 1 tsp. coarse-ground pepper.
4 Shake the bowl vigorously to toss the tomatoes and seasoning. Repeat every minute or two for about 5 minutes.
5 Heat oil to 375˚F (invest in a thermometer for best results).
6 Dip each tomato slice in flour, shaking off excess, then dip in egg wash and roll in crumbs, coating evenly. Place finished slices on a wire rack set on top of a pan.
7 Drop a few of the tomato slices into hot oil and fry until golden, about 2 minutes on each side.
8 Transfer to paper towels. Repeat with remaining slices.
9 Before serving, toss with kosher salt.
About Kevin Clark
Clark believes his most valuable training came via his friendship with Michael Greene of Matthews Cafeteria, the Tucker institution that’s been in Greene’s family since 1956. “I grew up in that kitchen,” says Clark. “I make my biscuits the same way he does.”
This article originally appeared in our September 2016 issue.