GREEN TOMATO PICCALILLI

Makes about 4 pints.

This spicy condiment is a snap to make. Don't bother peeling the tomatoes; simply throw them in the pot. Some piccalilli recipes call for cabbage, but we like it better without.

• 1/2 c. kosher salt

• 1 quart (4 c.) water

• 1 quart (4 c.) green tomatoes, cored and chopped

• 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

• 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

• 1 large onion, chopped

• 2 c. white wine vinegar

• 1 c. sugar

• 2 tsp. allspice berries

• 2 tsp. pepper berries

• 1 tsp. mustard seeds

• A few whole cloves

Directions

Heat together the salt and water to make a brine. Combine the tomatoes, peppers and onion in a large pot, cover with the brine and allow to sit overnight.

The next day, drain off the water. Heat the vinegar and sugar in an enameled or stainless steel pot until the sugar dissolves. Meanwhile, tie the spices into a cheesecloth bag or put into a tea ball. Pour the vinegar mixture over the vegetables and bring to a boil. Add the spices and boil gently for 30 minutes.

Remove the spices and ladle the piccalilli into hot sterilized pint jars, allowing 1/2-inch headroom. Process jars in boiling water for 10 minutes. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lids should not flex up and down.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons:

Calories 19 Fat 0 g Sodium 73 mg Saturated fat 0 g

Carbohydrates 4 g Calcium 4 mg

Protein 0 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: free food.

GREEN TOMATO MINCEMEAT

Makes 5 pints.

This spicy-sweet vegetarian mincemeat makes a wonderful, old-fashioned pie and is also good with grilled foods. You can peel the tomatoes by blanching them in boiling water first for a minute, then plunging them into ice water. The skin will pull off easily with a knife, but it's not necessary to do so.

• 6 c. chopped apples

• 6 c. chopped green tomatoes

• 4 c. brown sugar

• 11/3 c. cider vinegar

• 4 c. raisins

• 3 tsp. ground cinnamon

• 1 tsp. ground allspice

• 1 tsp. ground mace or nutmeg

• 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 2 tsp. salt

Directions

Toss together the apples and tomatoes in a large pot and drain well. Place them into a large kettle along with the brown sugar, vinegar, raisins, cinnamon, allspice, ground mace, pepper and salt.

Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, then lower the flame and simmer, uncovered, for about 3 hours, stirring often.

Spoon the mincemeat into hot sterilized pint jars allowing 1/2-inch headroom. Process jars in boiling water for 15 minutes. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lids should not flex up and down.

Nutrition information per 1/4 cup:

Calories 116 Fat 0 g

Sodium 130 mg Saturated fat 0 g

Carbohydrates 30 g Calcium 27 mg

Protein 1 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Dietary fiber 1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 fruit, 1 other carb.

FRIED GREEN TOMATOES

Serves 4 to 6.

This makes a terrific appetizer or side dish. Sometimes we eat them as an entrée with plenty of fresh corn and a big salad. (They're a bit messy but well worth the effort.)

• 3 medium green tomatoes

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 1/2 c. all-purpose flour

• 1/4 c. milk

• 2 eggs, lightly beaten

• 2/3 c. cornmeal

• 1/4 c. vegetable oil, divided

Directions

Cut the tomatoes into 1/2-inch slices and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place the flour, milk, eggs and cornmeal in separate low-sided dishes. Film a skillet with about 2 tablespoons of the oil and set over medium heat.

Dip the tomato slices first in the milk, then the flour, then the eggs, then the cornmeal. Fry half of the coated tomato slices at a time, flipping each as they brown on both sides (about 4 to 6 minutes per side).

Repeat with the remaining tomato slices, adding more oil to the skillet as necessary. Season with salt and pepper before serving.

Nutrition information per serving of 6:

Calories 160 Fat 10 g Sodium 21 mg Saturated fat 2 g

Carbohydrates 14 g Calcium 19 mg

Protein 3 g Cholesterol 36 mg Dietary fiber 1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 bread/starch, 2 fat.