Over the years I have made just about every possible tomato recipe, but for some reason I had never stuffed and roasted them. What was I thinking? Apparently I wasn’t because they were easy to make and absolutely delicious!
These are great as side dish or vegetarian main course – just leave out the cheese for vegan. Fantastic way to use all the tomatoes ripening in your garden this summer. If you wind up with extra chopped tomato meat (from hollowing out the ‘maters) you can use it to make a fresh pasta sauce. SCORE!
Have you discovered frozen rice yet? I swear it saved my life when I had to change to a gluten-free diet. I had no idea what to make or what to eat and I would wind up starving and searching the kitchen. I didn’t have time to wait 45 minutes for rice to cook, but I sure could grab a bag out of the freezer, pop it in the microwave and while it was cooking quickly saute some vegetables, and have a bowl of food ready in about 8 minutes. Hallelujah!
Now I keep a ready stash in the freezer for nights like tonight when I had so many other things going on that I forgot the rice had to be pre-cooked before making the tomatoes. I dove into the freezer, quickly cooked the frozen rice and let it cool while prepping the tomatoes and other ingredients.
I had this meal on the table in about 30 minutes (with the help of pre-cooked rice). It is healthy, naturally gluten-free, and the perfect summertime supper. I love that it makes a wonderful vegetarian main course (how we ate it this time) or as an accompaniment to grilled or roasted meats and poultry. You could certainly bake these on the grill alongside any low and slow cooking meats.
Make sure you check out all the other amazing recipes the gang at the Food Network has put together for our #SummerSoiree. Listed beneath the recipe, they are all incredible and delicious!
Have a wonderful weekend!
- Tomatoes and Toppings
- 2 tbsp organic olive oil
- 6 large firm beefsteak tomatoes
- Kosher salt
- 1 to 2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, for garnishing
- 1 to 2 tbsp finely chopped basil leaves, for garnishing
- 6 slender strips of cheese, for garnishing
- About 3 cups cooked and cooled rice (frozen rice works well)
- 2 tbsp organic olive or vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp kosher or fine sea salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp Sriracha or other hot sauce, optional
- 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese or mozzarella
- Brush a medium rectangular baking dish with the oil. Set a plate on the counter and line it with paper towels.
- Prepare the Tomatoes: Cut out the core of the tomato with a small sharp serrated knife and then cut about 1/2-inch slice off the top. If wobbly, cut a very thin slice off the bottom of the tomato so that it will be stable in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining tomatoes.
- Using the same serrated knife, make a cut in the meat of the tomato, about 1/2-inch from the edge, working slowly around until the center is loose, being careful not to break through the bottom of the tomato. Then cut an "X" through the center, again being careful not to cut into the bottom. Using a spoon, scoop out the center and place in a bowl.
- Sprinkle the inside of each tomato with salt fairly liberally to draw out the liquid, and place them upside down on the paper towel-covered plate. Let them rest while you make the filling.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Make the Filling: Place the cooked rice in a medium bowl. Break up any clumps by raking the rice with two forks. Add the olive oil, garlic, basil, salt and pepper. Toss together. Taste and add more salt or pepper if needed.
- Finely chop about half of the reserved meat of the tomatoes, draining off any excess juices. Add the chopped tomatoes to the rice and toss until evenly distributed. Taste again and adjust the seasoning if needed.
- Arrange the tomatoes in the prepared baking dish, scooped side up. Brush the outsides of each tomato with a little extra oil. Sprinkle the inside of each tomato with a little more salt and ground pepper (this is the only seasoning they will get). Fill each one with the rice mixture, packing it fairly firmly and adding enough so the filling is mounded. Sprinkle the tops liberally with the Parmesan and basil. Lay a strip of the cheese over the top and cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil. Transfer the tomatoes to the hot oven.
- Bake for 15 minutes then remove the foil. Continue baking until the tops brown slightly and the cheese is melted, about 20 more minutes. Serve hot.
- Yield: 3 main course servings or 6 side dish servings
Create a New Tradition Today!
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The Wimpy Vegetarian: Tomato and Swiss Tart
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Taste with the Eyes: Quiche with a Black Quinoa Crust, Heirloom Tomatoes, Spinach, Goat Cheese
Red or Green: Summer Pasta With No-Cook Tomato Sauce
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Heirloom Tomato & Crouton Casserole (Scalloped Tomatoes)
The Mom 100: Chopped Salad with Chicken, Tomatoes and Lemon Thyme Dressing
FN Dish: 10 Ways to Be a Tomato Whisperer
Let’s connect! If you ever need any entertaining or cooking advice, need to alter a recipe for gluten-free, or want recipe suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact me. I can also be found at the social media site links on the right. Thanks for joining the Heritage Cook Family!
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