~ "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; Through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures." ~ "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing" ~ "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." ~ "Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths."~

Monday, April 13, 2009

Ricotta Filled Tomatoes

Ricotta Filled Tomatoes...This recipe is actually a take on the classic ricotta stuffed pasta shells. But, I thought it would be fun to stuff roma tomatoes instead. The ricotta filled baked tomatoes are great as a side dish... or even as an appetizer. And they are supper easy to make.

The nice part about this dish, is that you can assemble the dish ahead of time... and then just bake later on during the day. I just enjoy recipes that can be made ahead, and that simplifies the last minute preparations. I didn't have any parmesan in the house, so I sprinkled some shredded mozzarela on top of the bread crumbs. You can actually omit the cheese altogether if you prefer.

For this dish, I like to use the smallest roma tomatoes...I just think they are cuter. I am sure you can use some large cherry tomatoes or campari tomatoes just as well. Try adding some bacon, ham or some gruyere cheese to the ricotta filling for extra flavor. Experiment with flavors according to your preference. Hope you enjoy... 

You will need: You can double recipe quite easily...you need about 1 TBS of ricotta filling per half tomato.

5 small roma tomatoes, halved
10 leveled TBS whole milk ricotta
1 TBS basil, chopped*
1 clove garlic, minced
1 TBS parsley, chopped
1 tsp dried onion powder
a pinch of chile flakes (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
*I used freeze dried(all I had) fresh is best, use it if you have it

1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs*
2 TBS mozzarela cheese (or preferably parmesan cheese)
extra basil for sprinkling on top
olive oil
* just place a couple of slices of white bread and process in a food processor till almost fine.

1. Cut tomatoes in half, lengthwise. Take out tomato pulp.
2. Pat the inside dry with a paper towel and sprinkle with some salt(I use kosher).
3. Let drain on paper towels while you prepare the filling.
4. Preheat oven to 400 degs F. ( I used my toaster oven).
5. Place bread crumbs in a bowl and set aside.
6. Prepare filling. In a separate bowl, mix all filling ingredients until thoroughly combined.
7. Place about 1 TBS of filling in each tomato.
8. Take each tomato and place face down in the breadcrumbs, press slightly so that the breadcrumbs will adhere to the filling  ... remove and place on baking sheet.
9. Sprinkle with some cheese and drizzle some olive oil.
10. Bake in a preheated 400 deg for about 20-25 minutes or until nicely golden.

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