I asked him last night what he wanted for dinner. He gave me the stock answer he always gives me when I ask him what he wants, turkey burgers (although spaghetti and meatballs comes a close second). Then he made one more request. He asked for no buns. Buns have too many calories. He had a point. It's not as if I couldn't stand to lose a few pounds myself.
I decided to go with my standard Chipotle Turkey Burger recipe with guacamole and my Roasted Tomato "Ketchup". I make this often and I have blogged about it here. It's my favorite way to make a bland meat like ground turkey taste better. (One would think after we took a few days to finish off that turkey breast that he wouldn't want to see any more turkey.)
I was fine with not using any buns (I need to watch my calories too after all), but I do like to give my burger some kind of "base". I also wanted to add a bit more in the way of vegetables to the meal. I was stumped for an idea. Sometimes I use portobello mushrooms, but that's just so Rachael Ray!
While heading over to the garlic display of Whole Foods, I saw these.
These were green heirloom tomatoes (I know tomatoes are a fruit. Work with me here!) I had an idea. How about I make fried green tomatoes? I've never made them before and they would sit nicely beneath my spicy burgers.
Browsing the store I came up with more inspiration. I found the perfect substance to cook them in (since bacon fat is out of the question).
So much for watching calories!
High calorie or not, this was a great meal. I want my burgers with fried green tomatoes on the side for the rest of my life.
I had never tried fried green tomatoes before. I went online for ideas for a recipe and discovered that there are way too many different ways of making them. In the end, I decided to just bread them like I would a chicken cutlet (using cornmeal instead of breadcrumbs) and frying them in lots of that great fat.
They were crispy on the outside and soft and juicy on the inside. We both loved them.
I have lots of use for the leftovers. I am making potatoes with that duck fat sometime soon. I am also going to use the leftover guacamole as a dip for my veggies while I snack at work.
As for the excess fire-roasted tomato ketchup, I think I'll tell you later what I plan to do with it.
My First Fried Green Tomatoes
3 large green heirloom tomatoes, thickly sliced
1/2 cup flour
1 egg, beaten
1 cup cornmeal
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup (give or take) duck fat
Set up your breading station with flour in one dish, egg in another, and cornmeal mixed with salt and pepper in the last one.
Dip tomato slices in the flour, then the egg, then the cornmeal, as if you were making chicken cutlets.
Heat the fat in a cast iron pan. You want it to be hot enough that a little flour sprinkled in the pan gives off a sizzle.
Lay tomato slices in hot fat. Cook on one side until nice and brown. Repeat with the other side. Drain on paper towels and serve warm.