Whenever Dick's and my travels bring us to St. Cloud (Minnesota), we have lunch at the Good Earth Food Co-op. Usually we choose soup, but most recently we had stuffed tomatoes. They were so very good that I decided to replicate them. My online search brought me to a stuffed peppers recipe on bettycrocker.com which I followed quite closely but subbed tomatoes for the green peppers.
However, I needed specifics on 1)how long to bake tomatoes vs. green peppers and 2)what to do with the pulp from the hollowed out tomatoes. Satisfied with online answers to these two questions, I got busy in the kitchen. Success! A keeper.
Stuffed Tomatoes with Rice and Meat
6 – 8 large tomatoes
1 lb lean ground beef or turkey
1 large onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup cooked brown rice
8 oz tomato sauce
1 tsp sea salt
Parmesan cheese, grated
Cook rice. Brown meat in a large skillet. When the pink has disappeared,
add the onions and sauté until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté about a
minute to soften but not browned. Slice tops off tomatoes. Use a paring knife
and a spoon to loosen and scoop out the tomato flesh (pulp). Be careful not to
pierce through the tomato skin. Process the pulp in a food processor until you
have a chunky liquid. Stand tomatoes upright in an oiled baking dish. Add rice,
tomato sauce, tomato pulp, and salt to meat. Bring to a simmer, then stuff tomatoes
with meat/rice mixture. Cover pan with aluminum foil. (Instead, I turned a glass baking dish upside down and used it for a cover.) Bake at 350° for 30–45 minutes. Remove from oven and
sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.