Chef Tyler Dudley is head chef at the Daniel Island Club.
"Fried Green Tomatoes" is not only the name of a movie, but a culinary favorite among Southerners, Italians and many others. But the way Chef Tyler Dudley prepares his at the Daniel Island Club, perhaps it should be featured on the big screen.
Giving the Basics Star Treatment
In the club’s Charleston, SC, kitchen he begins with traditional ingredients, including green tomatoes, cornmeal and Tabasco sauce. From there, he transforms the basics into a star with dramatic visual appeal. Chef Dudley builds alternate layers of the tomatoes and mozzarella slices, forming a tower of complementary textures and colors. Delicate greens resemble a garden on the tower rooftop.
Adding to its originality, Chef Dudley serves the dish with a black eyed pea vinaigrette. Black eyed peas are often served as a symbol of luck and fortune, and many times they are accompanied by fried green tomatoes. The combination is a classic, but this version goes beyond the call of duty. Usage of fresh local ingredients—a common practice at Daniel Island—further adds to its appeal.
Creative Twists Earn High Returns
Chef Dudley has been a member of the Daniel Island Club team since the clubhouse opened its doors in 2001. He oversees three kitchens, a 300-seat ballroom, and a poolside bar and grill. With that kind of responsibility, it is impressive he finds time for such creative dishes as his fried green tomatoes with black eyed pea vinaigrette. According to those at Daniel Island, “his creative twists on classic southern favorites keep members and their guests coming back for more.”
With its good looks and broad appeal, this specialty is certainly worthy of award nominations on par with its theatrical namesake.
Fried Green Tomatoes from the Daniel Island Club.
Recipe (serves 12)
Fried Green Tomatoes
1 cup buttermilk
½ tbsp Tabasco sauce
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
5 lbs thick sliced green tomatoes
1# each sliced fresh mozzarella
Mix the buttermilk and Tabasco together and set aside. Add the sliced tomatoes to milk mixture and allow it to marinate for one hour. Combine the yellow cornmeal, flour, baking soda, salt and ground pepper in a separate container. After an hour of marinating, drain the tomatoes. Lightly dredge the tomatoes in the flour mixture and fry.
Black Eyed Pea Vinaigrette
2 cups cooked black eyed peas
1 red bell pepper brunoise
1 yellow bell pepper brunoise
1 green bell pepper
1 red onion brunoise
2 tbsp chopped basil
½ tbsp oregano
1 tbsp chopped thyme
1 tbsp chopped chives
¼ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup sherry vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Combine first 8 ingredients together and set aside. Whisk chopped chives, red wine vinegar, sherry vinegar and olive oil together; mixture will not emulsify. Combine vinegar mixture with previous ingredients you set aside.
This dish may be served family style with all tomatoes in a serving dish or one to two tomatoes per plate. Alternate fried green tomato slices and fresh mozzarella on plate, and finish with black eyed pea vinaigrette on top.