Rice-Stuffed Tomatoes / Rosii umplute

Posted: April 17, 2008 in Appetisers
Tags: , , , , , ,


12 large, ripe but firm tomatoes


2 tbspn sugar

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 cup rice

1 1/2 cups water

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, finely shredded

Freshly ground black pepper

Cut a 1/2-inch slice off the top of each tomato and reserve the caps. Using a small spoon, scoop out the pulp and juice from each tomato, leaving a shell about 1/2 inch thick. Chop the pulp and aside with the juices. Sprinkle the cavity of each tomato with a little salt and with the sugar. Set aside.

Preaheat the oven to 375F. Oil a baking dish just large enough to hold all the tomatoes in a single layer.

In a large sauté pan, heat 1/4 cup of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the rice and sautéfor 2 minutes longer. Add 1 cup of the water and simmer, uncovered, until the water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and fold in the reserved tomato pulp and juices,  the garlic, parsley, basil, and the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Spoon the rice mixture into the tomatoes, dividing it evenly and filling each tomato about three fourth full ( the rice will expand ). Place the tomatoes in the prepared dish. Cover with the reserved tomato tops. Pour the remaining 1/2 cup water into the dish, and drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil. Cover the dish with aluminum foil.

Bake the tomatoes for about 30 minutes. Uncover the dish and continue to bake until the rice kernels are puffed and fully tender, about 30 minutes longer.

Remove from the oven and, if desired, drizzle with more olive oil, then let cool. Serve the tomatoes at room temperature.

Courtesy of Joyce G.

Bon apetit!


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