Food & Entertaining - Garden to Table

Vegetable rice-stuffed tomatoes

Jimmy Williams and Susan Heeger
Photography by
Eric Staudenmaier

Turn your biggest fruit into edible cups for a tasty rice and veggie mix

This dish always reminds me of summer's bounty—of straw baskets heaped with sweet corn, and fat tomatoes that taste best on the day you pick them. For added health value, I sometimes substitute long-grain brown rice for the traditional white.

Serves 4 to 6

  • 6 large firm tomatoes, red or green
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 large fresh mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • minced kernels from 1 large ear corn
  • ½ cup ¼-inch pieces thin asparagus
  • ½ teaspoon mild curry powder salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup cooked, long-grain white rice
  • ¼ cup minced green olives
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Slice ½ inch off the top of each tomato and set the slices aside.

Scoop out the center of each tomato, leaving ¼ inch all around. Puree the tomato pulp, measure out ½ cup, and reserve the rest for another use.

Drain the tomato shells, cut-side down, on paper towels.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat and sauté the mushrooms, shallots, and garlic for 1 minute.

Add the corn and asparagus and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the tomato puree, curry powder, and salt and pepper to taste, and continue to  stir over medium heat until the liquid has almost evaporated.

Stir in the rice, olives, and basil and remove from the heat to cool.

Sprinkle the insides of the tomato shells with more salt and pepper to taste, stuff each one with the rice mixture, and cover with the reserved tomato tops.

Put the tomatoes on an oil-coated baking sheet and bake until the tomatoes soften, 25 minutes.

Excerpted from From Seed to Skillet. Copyright © 2010 by Jimmy Williams and Susan Heeger. Excerpted by permission of Chronicle Books. All rights reserved.

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