Thursday, May 24, 2012

Italian Stuffed Tomatoes

        I am still alive! I know you were worried that I hadn't posted in a while and I am sure you called all your friends to make sure I was okay. Alright, maybe not... 
        I have been out of town last weekend and trying to not drown in work this week. With Memorial Day weekend approaching, I will be able to update you on my trip to Portland (a blast!) and a few recipes I have been working on. 
        Anywho, I have been craving stuffed mushrooms and stuffed tomatoes lately. Tuesday's dinner was this creation: Italian Stuffed Tomato!   I couldn't decide if I wanted to make a rice stuffed tomato, a stuffed mushroom or what seasonings I wanted...but as my brain began to slow down as I trudged through the grocery store Tuesday night, I went for the basics. Basil & tomatoes go well together and that sounded easy.  (see variations & ideas at the bottom!)

Italian Stuffed Tomatoes:
4 large beefsteak tomatoes (6 if you choose small on-the-vines)
1 lb ground chicken or turkey (I precooked the onion & ground turkey)
1/2 white onion
2 c fresh spinach
1 c mushrooms
1/2 c greek yogurt
1/2 c basil leaves, loose in measuring cup
Salt & Pepper

Since it is just me, I cooked the meat & onion and set aside in fridge to use for later meals. This is about what you would need for just one tomato. (I made it up for one, and then expanded the recipe to feed four if need be.. or maybe you are just super hungry!)
 Saute chopped mushrooms & chopped spinach for 3 minutes. Toss in already cooked meat & onion.
 Cut the top off tomato & scoop out insides, seeds and most of the juice. Leave some for moisture.
Mix greek yogurt, sliced basil and meat/mushroom mixture together in a bowl.
 Spoon mixture into tomato. Stuff Stuff Stuff!
 After stuffed as much as it can take, bake the tomato for 20 minutes at 350 degrees until the tomato is juice and filling is warm.
 It is like a mini lasagna... but better! 

Additional variations:

Stuff filling into a portabella mushroom & paprika (minus the basil)
Stuff filling into a hollowed out bread roll (I did this for lunch, with fresh spinach)
Mix ground turkey with wild rice, greek yogurt/sour cream, chopped dill & paprika 
Season with fresh, chopped dill instead of spinach and basil
Spice it up with a jalapeno & chili powder
The possibilities are endless.
Share your favorite idea or stuffed "vegetable"!

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