Green Tomatoes are bad ass. Their red and yellow counterparts whine as soon as it gets a little chilly out. Some of the really lame ones even shrivel up and die. But green tomatoes are not so fragile and I even found one that had been sitting in my fridge for over a week and half that was perfectly fine. They do not need to be handled delicately and can often be found fried (and in the title of a good movie with Kathy Bates). I’m pretty sure that they laugh at the rest of the summer veggies that complain as soon as long sleeve season begins. Yes, green tomatoes can tolerate a lot. So can whole coldwater fish.
The folks at the farmers market had a fish called Jackfish which looked dense and that I thought could stand up to the green tomatoes. Having never cooked the fish before, I consulted one of my favorite seafood cookbooks Fish and Shellfish by James Peterson. Jim’s book is great because after each recipe, it lists some comparable fish that can be substituted if the exact fish in the recipe is not available. I’ve found that having books like this makes it far easier to eat in season because it reminds me that most recipes can be adjusted to better showcase what’s available seasonally and locally. Anyway, Jim’s book recommends 15 minutes of cooking time in a 400-450 degree oven per inch of thickness. My fish was about an inch thick. No complicated math involved.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be excited for the first tomatoes next season. But for a couple more weeks, these resiliant little green guys will more than suffice.
Roast Jackfish over Bad-Ass Green Tomatoes
Total Market Bill $15/3 Servings = $5/serving
Preheat oven to 425
Give a pound of green tomatoes and 3 cloves of garlic a rough chop
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in an oven safe skillet over medium heat
Add tomatoes and garlic along with some salt and pepper and saute for 10 minutes or until the tomatoes become slightly soft
Add a cup of white cooking wine, beer, or stock along with a pinch of cayenne pepper and a pinch of curry powder
Sprinkle both sides of a 1.5-3 pound whole fish generously with salt and pepper
When oven has preheated, lay fish on top of tomatoes and roast for 15 minutes per inch of thickness
I check my fish with a meat thermometer and I’ve found that once it reaches 130 degrees or so, you’re good to go. No need to check the tomatoes. They are fine whether they are sitting in a refrigerator, in a 425 degree oven, or anywhere in between.