Oh, man… creamy creamed spinach, summer’s fresh tomatoes, melted gruyere cheese… what’s not to love here? That was a totally rhetorical question because there’s everything to love in these little stuffed tomatoes.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting to be all that enraptured with them, mostly because I wasn’t anticipating that a tomato baked thusly was going to hold up or be a very exciting vehicle for our spinach stuffing. But yay for being wrong! Sort of.
You see, the original recipe (thank you Katie Lee) had you cooking these for 25 to 30 minutes, by which time the tomatoes had softened past the point of loveliness, and were no longer able to perform their job of spinach-holder all that expertly. But I could see the potential, and subsequently reduced the cooking time by half and then ran them under the broiler briefly to finish melting the cheese on top. Perfection.
I just erased 3 paragraphs detailing tomato types and how I switched up the stuffing ingredients, yada yada yada…. (Big yawn here).
Let me be brief before I bore even myself to tears. Roma tomatoes are best for stuffing, my revamped spinach stuffing rocks, don’t over-cook these and yes, we now have a rather excellent little spinach-stuffed tomato that will hold together and yet still be melty and delicious.
Just one more thing before I let you go make your own little stuffy tomatoes… if you use a lot of frozen spinach as I seem to do, getting rid of all the excess water after it’s thawed can be a bother. Somewhere along the way I picked up this trick, maybe you already have one of these, but a potato ricer is without a doubt god’s gift to perfectly drained frozen spinach. After thawing, just plop it in the ricer, squeeze and you’re done. You are now free to use your perfectly dry spinach however you please.
And here’s the part where I confess that I may or may not have just eaten a bowl of that creamy spinach stuffing topped with some melted Gruyere cheese and been oh so very happy about it. Here’s the recipe…
Creamy Spinach-Stuffed Tomatoes
These scrumptious little tomatoes are wonderful as a side dish to anything you might want to throw on the grill. They're also great as an appetizer or a quick lunch. I've made some changes to the original recipe, which you can see by clicking on the link above.
Makes 12 stuffed tomatoes
6 medium-large roma tomatoes
10 oz frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
3 to 3.5 oz soft goat cheese (about 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups grated gruyere cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Use a sharp knife to cut each tomato in half lengthwise. Use a paring knife to cut out the inside of the tomato and then use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and pulp.
In a blender or food processor, puree the spinach with the goat cheese, Parmesan, salt and pepper. Gently spoon the mixture into each tomato and top with the gruyere. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. If the cheese has not sufficiently melted by this time, just run them under the broiler until the cheese is melted and bubbly.