OK, we are in the midst of an Arkansas summer now, aren’t we? The one good thing about it being this hot: it means we are in tomato season.

I haven’t seen the Bradley County tomatoes yet, but I have seen some pretty ones out at the Bramble Market on Highway 10 and Ferndale Cut Off in the last few weeks. While you’re out on the hunt for the juicy red ones, grab the ones that haven’t ripened yet-the ones that become the deliciously fried green tomatoes.

This recipe combines the two delicacies along with a basil shrimp sauce that looks divine. Full disclosure:  I haven’t made this recipe yet, but it’s definitely on my list of things to do ASAP.

Enjoy!

Fried Green Tomatoes with Shrimp and Tomato Basil Cream Sauce

Ingredients

For the shrimp sauce:

  • 1 TB.  butter

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 2 c. peeled and chopped Arkansas tomatoes, juices retained

  • 1 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste

  • 1/4 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper

  • 1/4 tsp. Cajun seasoning

  • 1 tsp. sugar

  • 1 TB. chopped parsley

  • 1 TB. fresh, chopped basil

  • 1 lb. small shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

For the fried green tomatoes:

  • 3 medium sized green tomatoes

  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper

  • 1/4 cup of milk

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 ½ cups of Young’s Fish Fry breading (or any other Young’s product) made right here in central Arkansas

  • Peanut oil for frying

Directions

Sauce

  1. For the sauce, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.

  2. Add the onion and cook just until translucent, then add the garlic and cook another minute.

  3. Add the tomatoes with their juices, salt, pepper, Old Bay, Cajun seasoning, sugar, parsley and basil.

  4. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 25 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.

  5. Stir in the shrimp and cook until shrimp turns pink; stir in the cream and heat through.

  6. Hold over low while you prepare the fried green tomatoes.

Fried Green Tomatoes

  1. Meanwhile, for the fried green tomatoes, slice tomatoes 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick, set on paper towels and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Let rest for 5 minutes.

  2. Beat together the milk and egg in a small bowl; set aside.

  3. Put Young’s Fish Fry breading in a bowl. Heat 1/2 inch of oil in a skillet. Dip the tomato slices in the milk, then into the Young’s Fish Fry breading, shake off excess and place into the hot oil. Cook until both sides are lightly browned and drain on paper towels.

  4. Place two to three green tomato slices on a serving plate per person and spoon some of the shrimp sauce over the tomatoes.

Serves 4-6 people.

Adapted from Deep South Dish. Images courtesy of aninspiredcook.com.

READ MORE: It’s Picnic Season