Recipe: One hot tomato from Hollywood

SOME food you only hear about in the movies. Such is the case with fried green tomatoes, that most down-home of southern American staples. A L Lane, of Spalding, Lincolnshire, is the winner of this week's entry on coping with the summer glut of tomatoes: he submits recipes given to him by an American friend. He wins a hardback copy of Entertaining all'Italiana, by Anna del Conte.

Fried Green Tomatoes

Serves 4 as a side dish

Ingredients: 2 large green

tomatoes

4oz/125g strong white flour

1/4 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 lb/250g streaky bacon oil for frying

Preparation: Fry, drain and crumble bacon. Slice tomatoes thickly. Combine flour and seasonings. Roll tomato slices in seasoning and fry until golden brown. Sprinkle with bacon.

As a condiment, Mr Lane offers a recipe for 'cream gravy': melt 2tbs butter, add 2tbs flour and, stirring constantly, add 2tbs milk. When smooth, add about 1/2 pint of milk and cook gently, stirring, until thickened.

Mr Lane also gives an appealing Italian variation: add grated parmesan, polenta and chopped basil to the flour before coating the tomatoes, then fry in olive oil and finish with grated parmesan and fresh basil.

Next week: tomato chutney and more. New entries are welcome for our first autumn category: cooking with mushrooms. Send your entries (with source, if not original) to Emily Green, the Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB. The prize will be two bottles of Shaw & Smith 1991 Sauvignon Blanc, grown in the Adelaide Hills of Australia, supplied by Winecellars, 153-155 Wandsworth High Street, London SW18 (081-871 3979).

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