In spite of your best efforts to speed up the ripening of green tomatoes in your polytunnel, you are still likely to be left with the odd green tomato at the end of the season. The good news is that while it is not a good idea to eat green tomatoes raw, you an use them up in a range of delicious recipes. With these recipe ideas for green tomatoes, there is no need to let any of the harvest go to waste:
Green Tomato Salsa Verde
Chop up some green tomatoes, onion or red onion, garlic, chillies and coriander (to taste) to make a delicious and versatile green tomato salsa verde. This can be enjoyed in tacos or wraps, in sandwiches, or as an accompaniment for crisps and other dips.
Fried Green Tomatoes
This recipe is a firm favourite in the southern United States. In this simple recipe, green tomatoes are simply sliced and coated in a mixture of cornflour or breadcrumbs and spices, then fried. Fried green tomatoes are great for a side dish, breakfast, or served with a salad for a simple mid-week lunch or dinner.
Caramelised Onion and Green Tomato Tarte Tatin
This dinner-party worthy recipe is a way to really showcase the flavour of your green tomatoes, and use them to contrast with the sweetness of caramelised onions and the richness of the pastry. The green tomatoes are sliced and layered in the pastry base with caramelised onion and, if you wish, some light cream cheese or ricotta.
Green Tomato Curry
Green tomato curries are another popular option for using up those last green tomatoes of the season. There are plenty of different green tomato chutney recipes to choose from, ranging from a simple, thin tomato curry to something far more intricate that will make use of many of the other vegetables and herbs that you may have growing in your polytunnel at this time of year.
Mixed Mediterranean Vegetable Focaccia
You could use your green tomatoes on a pizza but a more sophisticated option and a slightly healthier twist on the topped-dough-base idea is this vegetable topped focaccia. A simple bread base drizzled with olive oil is made all the more delicious by the addition of green tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, courgettes and other vegetables.
These are just a few of the many ways to make use of green tomatoes from your polytunnel. Green tomatoes may not be as sweet as the red ripened ones, but their bitter tartness is the perfect compliment in a wide range of delicious dishes. How do you use your green tomatoes? Let us know in the comments below.
Elizabeth Waddington is a writer and green living consultant living in Scotland. Permaculture and sustainability are at the heart of everything she does, from designing gardens and farms around the world, to inspiring and facilitating positive change for small companies and individuals.
She also works on her own property, where she grows fruit and vegetables, keeps chickens and is working on the eco-renovation of an old stone barn.