Stuffed tomatoes are an easy and elegant way to use up any and all kinds of leftovers. My refrigerator was beginning to spill over with pesky scraps, including some odd pieces of sautéed chicken thighs (with bits of panko still clinging to them), cooked carrot sticks brought home in a doggie bag the night before, and a stuffed baked potato. I also had a large tomato on hand (bought to convert into a vegetable casing), and voilà! There were all the makings needed for a light dinner for two. Here’s the recipe.
How to Make the Stuffing
First I cut the tomato in half and emptied the contents (used in today’s lunch omelet) and turned the halves upside down on a plate to drain. Then, after finely chopping the chicken and carrot pieces, I mixed them with the stuffing of the baked potato in order to bind the mass together. Since all these scraps were pre-flavored, no more seasoning was added; only a dash of white wine for some zip.
Time to Bake the Stuffed Tomatoes
Then I set the toaster oven at 400˚F and greased a small ovenproof dish. Finally came spooning the mixture into the two tomato casings, popping them into the dish, topping them with bread crumbs (made from leftover stale bread and kept handy in a jar in the fridge), dotting them with butter (yes, butter!), and finally sprinkling on some grated Romano cheese.
After 30 minutes of baking, the oven switched itself off, and the dish sat there another hour. Just before serving, I switched it on to broil for about 8 minutes to brown the bread crumbs.
Eat Good Stuff
I have to confess that I started eating with great trepidation, as you never know exactly how your concoction will actually turn out. These stuffed tomatoes made a surprisingly good and wholesome meal in itself. All it needed was a garden salad as an accompaniment. Unfortunately, we’re off the carbs, but a crispy French baguette would have been superb!
Do you have a favorite recipe for stuffed tomatoes or other vegetables? Share it with us in the comment section below.
Want more recipes for creatively making over the leftovers? Link here to get a copy of Jocelyn Deprez’s book, The Refrigerator Files.