- Large tomatoes-as many as you plan to stuff, plus an extra in case you accidentally slice the side of the tomato.
- Filling can be of your choosing, but I recommend a mix of vegetables, beans and a rice-like grain such as rice, quinoa, orzo, wheatberry. You could easily buy these items prepared from Whole Foods or any other grocery store that has a good salad bar. Top the filling with your favorite kind of cheese. A soft cheese like goat is especially delicious with these.
My filling included:
- Snow peas
- Black beans
- a few black olives (pitted)
- Diced peppers
- Diced onions
- Goat Cheese-small piece on top.
- Manchengo cheese- about a teaspoon shredded on top.
Cut the tops of the tomatoes. Save the tops for presentation purposes. Begin scooping out the inside as well as you can without slicing the sides of the tomato. To avoid an accidental cut to the side, try using a grapefruit spoon to remove the filling. Be sure to scrape all the seeds out of the tomato.
This is probably the most important step: Salt the inside of the emptied tomato shell and place upside down to sweat out as much liquid as possible. Leave standing upside down for 1 hour. It's very key to drain these tomatoes as much as possible, so your finished product is not soupy.
Cook the empty tomato shells in the oven on a greased baking sheet for 5 minutes at 350 degrees.
Mix your filling but do not add the cheese yet. Add the filling to the tomato. Place your cheese on top.
Bake the stuffed tomatoes for 5 minutes at 350 degrees and another 2 minutes at 450 degrees.
Presentation is not my forte, but even I managed to make these look pretty. Place a fresh basil leaf and/or an olive to the tomaoto top with a toothpick and "close" the tomato.