Stuffed tomatoes are super summer side dish

Robin McDaniel
Summer tomatoes can be a delicious side dish with this recipe.

Summer tomatoes can be a delicious side dish with this recipe.

Nothing says summer like a homegrown tomato. When my neighbor, Art Will, brought over some tomatoes he had grown, and I had just the recipe in mind for them. Of course, I had to have my first tomato, cheese and mayonnaise sandwich of the year with one of the tomatoes he brought.

The others ended up in this week’s recipe. Recipes for Stuffed Tomatoes will vary from quite plain stuffings to elaborate ones. I choose this one because I have used it in the past with good results, and the ingredient list is “middle of the road.”

So when you find yourself overrun with tomatoes, try this for your family.

The recipe is from the Food Network Kitchens. The only adjustment I made was in dividing the stuffing. I used 4 medium tomatoes instead of 2 large ones. Thank you, Art, for the tomatoes!

Stuffed Tomatoes

From the Food Network Kitchens

2 large or 4 medium tomatoes

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

3 slices bacon (about 3 ounces), finely chopped

1 shallot, thinly sliced

1 box (10 oz.) frozen, chopped spinach,

Freshly ground pepper

Freshly grated nutmeg

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1/3 cup fine bread crumbs

1/2 tsp. hot sauce optional

Position an oven rack in the upper part of the oven and preheat the broiler to high. Defrosted the spinach and squeeze out excess liquid. Cut tomatoes crosswise, and pop out the seeds. Season tomatoes with some of the salt and pepper, and place cut-side down on a paper towel to drain.

Cook the bacon over medium heat in a large skillet until crispy, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to paper towel with the tomatoes.

Cook the shallot until tender, about 3 minutes.

Add the spinach to the skillet. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Stir until heated through and somewhat dry, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a board to cool.

In a large bowl, add the crisp bacon and toss with the spinach mixture, Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Place the tomatoes on a foil-lined baking pan. Season with pepper and stuff each with the spinach stuffing.

Broil until warm throughout and tops are brown, about 5 minutes.

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