Tomato is one of nature's super foods. They are full of vitamins and contain the powerful antioxidant Lycopene, which prevents cancers and protect your skin from aging. In fact, the benefit of tomato is one of the best kept beauty secrets of Italian women, just look at the ageless Sophia Loren. (see Roma facial)
Unfortunately I have never been a big fan of tomatoes, I just don't like their mushy soft texture. However, I am determined not to miss out on the benefits of this natural beauty food and want to include more tomatoes in our diet. I had been looking around for some interesting ideas to make tomatoes more tasty, then one day I came across this delicious looking French side dish called Tomates a la Provencale.
While the original stuffing of this recipe is made of breadcrumbs or couscous, I have changed it to rice and added some crispy bacon pieces and Viola! Gone was the mushy texture of tomatoes, instead it was crunchy, juicy and very much appetizing.
This warm, cheesy dish pairs tomato with Parmesan cheese and makes a healthy and delicious winter dish.
Cook Time: 45 mins
Serves : 2
Estimated Cost: $ 8
- 2 slices bacon, diced
- 4 large tomatoes
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 tablespoon of mixed Italian herbs
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup of rice, cooked and cooled
- 2 tablespoon of Olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Fry bacon pieces in a large pan until golden brown. Set aside.
- Wash tomatoes and cut a thick slice off the top of each tomato.Scoop out seeds , pulp, juice, leaving a 1/2 inch wall. Keep 1/2 cup of tomato juice and pulp.
- Stir bacon, cooked rice, cheese, green pepper, into tomato pulp. Add a tablespoon of mixed Italian herbs and 2 tablespoons of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Spoon the rice filling into the tomato shells.
- Prepare a baking tray by lightly greasing it with olive oil. Place stuffed tomatoes onto prepared baking dish.
- Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes until heated through.