Recipes: Crunchy Fried Green Tomatoes with Fresh Tomato

2 pounds Chef Jeff green (unripe) tomatoes (about 4 medium)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 large egg
1 tablespoon milk
5 cups cornflakes (about 6 ounces)
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Accompaniment: fresh tomato salsa, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut tomatoes into 12 (1/2-inch thick) slices. In a shallow bowl, whisk together flour, salt, sugar, and cayenne. In another shallow bowl, whisk together egg and milk. In a third shallow bowl, coarsely crush corn flakes with hands. Working with 1 tomato slice at a time, dredge in flour, shaking off excess, and dip in egg, letting excess drip off. Coat slices with corn flakes, pressing them to adhere, and arrange slices in 1 layer on a baking sheet.

In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil over moderate heat until foam subsides and fry 3 tomato slices until golden brown, about 3 minutes on each side. (Be careful not to let coating burn.) Transfer tomatoes to paper towels to drain. Fry remaining tomato slices in remaining butter and oil in same manner. On another baking sheet arrange drained tomato slices in 1 layer. Bake tomatoes in middle of oven until tender and hot, about 4 minutes.

Serve tomatoes topped with salsa.

Fresh Tomato Salsa:

2 pounds vine-ripened Chef Jeff red and/or orange tomatoes (about 5 medium)
2 fresh Chef Jeff serrano or jalapeno chiles
1/4 medium onion (preferably white)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro sprigs
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Quarter and seed tomatoes. Cut tomatoes into 1/4-inch dice and transfer to a bowl. Wearing rubber gloves, seed and finely chop chiles. Finely chop enough onion to measure 1/4 cup and chop cilantro. Stir chiles, onion, cilantro, and garlic into tomatoes with sugar and lime juice and salt and pepper, to taste. Salsa may be made 1 hour ahead and kept at cool room temperature.

Yield: 2 1/2 cups
Difficulty: Medium
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 first-course servings

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