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May 18, 2007

Waiter, There's Something In My...Mediterranean Stuffed Tomatoes And Peppers


This month's "Waiter There's Something In My..." challenge is that of stuffed fruit/vegetables. I had many yummy ideas run through my head...Strawberries stuffed with a cheesecake filling (which truth be told I think I'm going to make soon anyway!), cucumbers stuffed with crab dip (again it will probably be a future recipe) and sweet potatoes stuffed with raisins and pecans, just to name a few. I finally decided to go with a Mediterranean inspired stuffed tomato/pepper combo, because after all two for the price of one is always a good thing!

Stuffed tomatoes have always intrigued me. Truth be told I've tried various baked varieties and have never found one that I quite liked...That is until I decided to throw in some goat cheese and spinach! I decided the mixture would also be delicious in a pepper too so I tried both! The result was delicious!

These lovely little morsels would make perfect appetizers or you could even use larger tomatoes and peppers and easily make them into a main course. No matter how you eat these Mediterranean Stuffed Tomatoes And Peppers, do try them, they are scrumptious!

Mediterranean Stuffed Tomatoes

What You'll Need:
1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon of butter
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 small red onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 - 6 ounce bag of baby spinach, washed and drained
1 - 14 ounce can of small artichoke hearts in water, drained and chopped
8 ounces of goat cheese, crumbled
18-24 small tomatoes (about the size of a golf ball), tops and seeds removed
4-6 long sweet peppers, tops, seeds and ribs removed
1/3 cup of bread unseasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Sea Salt
Olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 F.

In a medium pan sauté onions and garlic with a little sea salt and freshly ground black pepper over medium heat in butter and olive oil until just tender. Add spinach and cook until wilted down. Add artichokes and stir in goat cheese until just melted. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.

Scoop out seeds from tomatoes and seeds and ribs from the peppers and place in a 13 X 9 baking dish. (Note: I like to save the insides of the tomatoes and freeze them to use in chili or soup later.) Using a spoon stuff each tomato and pepper with the slightly cooled goat cheese/spinach mixture.

After the veggies are stuffed sprinkle the tops of each with bread crumbs, then Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of sea salt. Drizzle to tops with olive oil and bake for 30-30 minutes until lightly browned and the peppers are tender.

Serve immediately.

Notes: You could used bigger tomatoes and/or bell peppers to easily make this dish a main course, though they would most likely need a bit more baking time. Mushrooms would also be a nice addition, either cooked with the filling or stuffed with the filling. Either way would be delicious! The stuffing also would make an excellent dip.

Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers

Posted by Dianne at May 18, 2007 10:13 AM

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Dianne, these tomatoes are really something! I love the stuffing you chose, artichokes are so delicious.

Btw, I'd love to see those strawberries stuffed with a cheesecake filling around here. ;)

Posted by: Patricia Scarpin at May 21, 2007 8:16 AM

I'm a huge fan of goat cheese! I'm always looking for something new and exciting to try it with/in. :O)

Posted by: Dianne at May 21, 2007 3:22 PM

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