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Average first frost in Minneapolis is September 16th and I still have green tomatoes

Going Green with my tomatoes this year...
Going Green with my tomatoes this year...
by Rebecca

I have at least a zillion green tomatoes on two plants and it's almost mid-September in Minnesota.  Average frost date is next week - time is getting short.

Yesterday, in the car, my daughter Ava (age 8) asked if we should make those green tomatoes pickles we read about in a Laura Ingalls Wilder book.  She obviously shares my concern that things in the garden aren't going as planned. 

I've done my research on what you can do with green tomatoes and have come up with a few ideas.  Now, I haven't tried them yet but I feel a sense of urgency to publish this article before our first hard freeze - which could be next week! 

Average first frost dates in MN:

Here are my top ideas for your green, unripened tomatoes:

Fried Green Tomatoes - a very good step-by-step guide from Southern Plate
 I thought these looked cool:       

GREEN TOMATO PARMESAN (if you didn't grow any eggplant)

You could also put fried green tomatoes on your favorite salad - as compensation for not achieving the red ripe fresh ones. 

Enough of fried stuff - after all, I am supposed to be a healthy cooking writer!  We like rice at our house so I thought a nice rice bake dish would be good for the cooler weather and I found this:

Green Tomato Rice Bake with Bacon (you could substitue ham or chicken easily)

I mentioned green tomato pickles - I don't really do pickling, but if you were so inclined, here how Ma Ingalls may have done it for her family. 

Do you like salsa?  (what a silly question).  I am all over this really easy recipe for Green Tomato Salsa!  This would go great with my Green Chile Chicken Enchilada recipe. 

These are just a few ideas - there are tons more but I picked out ones that I might actually do in my kitchen.  From my research, green unripened tomatoes have a lot of diffferent uses than ripe ones since they are firmer. 

So, don't despair over your greenies - think of them as an opportunity to try new recipes from your garden!   



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