These tomatoes can be made early in the morning, before the heat of summer or busy schedules interrupt cooking activity. Serve them warm or at room temperature, as they are lovely both ways. And if you are in the mood vary the vegetables by using red peppers or eggplant rather than tomatoes for an equally lovely oven-baked vegetable dish.
- 4 medium vine-ripened tomatoes
- 1 medium green zucchini or yellow squash, top and root trimmed
- 1/4 cup shelled pistachios or almonds
- Pinch whole fennel seeds
- Pinch dried red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves or dried herbes de Provence
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
- Zest and juice of half a lemon
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Wash the tomatoes and cut off the top 1/4 inch to create a lid. Scoop out the inside of the tomatoes and reserve the seeds and juice for the dressing.
- Sprinkle the inside of the tomatoes with salt. Place the tomatoes and their lids upside down on the parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- Grate the zucchini on the coarse side of a box grater. Place the grated zucchini on the baking sheet next to the tomatoes.
- Bake the tomatoes and zucchini for 5 minutes then remove them from the oven to cool.
- Increase the oven temperature to 375°F.
- Meanwhile, grind the pistachios into a coarse powder with a food processor. Crush the fennel seeds and dried red pepper flakes with a pestle and mortar.
- In a medium sized bowl, toss together the baked zucchini with the ground pistachios, crushed fennel seeds, dried chili flakes, rosemary, garlic, 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, and salt to taste.
- Fill the tomatoes with the zucchini filling and top with the tomato lids.
- Return the tomatoes to the parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until they are beginning to brown.
- Meanwhile, in a medium sized bowl, whisk together the reserved tomato seeds and juice, remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, a pinch of salt, and the lemon zest and juice to make a dressing.
- Arrange the stuffed tomatoes on a serving plate and drizzle with a small amount of the dressing. Serve additional dressing alongside at the table.
- Category: Light Entree
- Cuisine: Italian