by Sheridan Lane, director, LLCC culinary programs and operations
As we soak up what will potentially be the last few days of summerlike weather before the fall chill sets in, I am taking a bit of time to indulge in an end-of-season favorite – Grilled Honey Sriracha Bacon BLT with Fried Green Tomatoes and Aioli.
I know this recipe has a few steps, but this sandwich is so worth the effort and is extra tasty with those end of season green tomatoes. With soup season right around the corner, this may be the perfect item to ease this season’s transition and would be delicious when paired with a potato soup. This weekend, turn on your favorite game, make a delicious Bloody Mary, and allow yourself the time to slow down and prepare this delicious sandwich!
To be as efficient as possible in this multistep sandwich, think like a chef and prepare the layers of your sandwich as follows:
Preheat the grill to 375 degrees. While the grill is heating, make the sauce second so that the flavors can meld before spreading on your sandwich. As quoted by Sipsey from the movie “Fried Green Tomatoes,” “The secret Is in the sauce” and the topping for this sandwich is no different.
Quick Aioli with Fresh Parsley
2 garlic cloves, pressed or super finely minced
½ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
¼th bunch of fresh parsley stems removed
Freshly ground black pepper & kosher salt to taste.
Place all ingredients in a small processor and puree until well blended. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Slice green tomatoes in 1/3rd inch thick slices. Combine buttermilk and 1 tablespoon of Sriracha (more if you like spicy) in a small bowl and add tomato slices. Set aside
Prepare glaze by combining 1 tablespoon Sriracha with 1 tablespoon water and 2 tablespoons honey. If you like it spicy, feel free to add more Sriracha. Place 1 pound of bacon on medium-high grill (about 375 degrees) and press with a heat proof pan (preferably cast iron) to keep the bacon from curling up. Grill until lightly charred or for about 5 minutes. Turn bacon over to crisp for about 4-6 minutes more. Brush glaze on bacon during last 2 minutes of cooking. Cooking times can vary significantly based on how thick your bacon is and the heat of your grill and beware of flare-ups caused by the bacon drippings. When grilling is complete, place bacon on paper towels to drain.
Prepare the fried green tomato set-up by placing an egg wash in one shallow dish, the cornmeal mix in another shallow dish, and preheating ½ inch of olive oil in a large frying pan on medium high heat.
Egg Wash – Use equal parts whole egg to 1 tablespoon water per tomato. For 1 pound of bacon, I would suggest frying no less than 4 green tomatoes so that means using 4 eggs and 4 tablespoons of water to make the egg wash.
(This is enough for 4 medium sized green tomatoes.)
1 cup all purpose flour
½ cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon finely ground kosher salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
Mix spices, flour, and cornmeal until well incorporated and place in shallow dish.
To batter the tomatoes, remove slice from buttermilk mix and shake off. Dredge tomato in flour mix, then into egg wash, and back into flour mix. Then lay your battered tomato in your sizzling oil and cook until crispy on both sides. Remove and let drain on paper towels.
Toast bread, rinse lettuce leaves, and you are ready to layer your BLT with parsley aioli!