As I’ve mentioned before, I l.o.v.e. tomatoes. So, when I saw these beautiful, large vine-ripened tomatoes on special at the grocery store, I knew I needed to buy them, and create a dish that exhibited their flavor. These baked tomatoes have a salty tang from the feta cheese, and a great texture from the panko breadcrumbs.
To make my Feta Stuffed Baked Tomatoes you need the following ingredients: four large vine ripened tomatoes, 3/4 cup of fat-free feta cheese, 1/4 cup of plain panko breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons of diced vidalia onion, 1 clove of minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon of dried parsley, 1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon of dried basil.
To get things started, preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and coat a small baking dish with cooking spray (olive oil preferably). Rinse and dry your tomatoes. Slice off the tops, saving them to garnish later, if desired. Next, use a spoon to remove the insides of the tomatoes. You want to reserve the flesh, but discard the seeds. I put my flesh in a strainer over a bowl, to allow any excess juice to drip off. I found that the best way to remove the flesh, was to dig a spoon down each rib, and then pulling gently with the spoon to remove the middle. You’ll get the hang of it after the first one!
After removing the flesh from all four tomatoes, spray the inside and outside of the tomato shells with cooking spray, and place them in your greased casserole.
Roughly chop the tomato flesh, and dice up 2 tablespoons worth of vidalia onion.
Add the tomatoes and onion to a pan over medium heat. You also want to add the minced garlic clove, 1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon of dried parsley, 1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon of dried basil.
Cook for about five minutes over medium heat, allowing some of the water from vegetables to release, and cook out.
Remove the tomato mixture to a bowl. Add the 1/4 cup of panko breadcrumbs, and 3/4 a cup of fat-free feta cheese crumbles.
Stir the filling to combine.
Evenly distribute the tomato/panko/feta mixture inside of the four tomato shells. Top the stuffed tomatoes with additional panko and feta. Sprinkle tops with a little extra dried basil and oregano.
Place the stuffed tomatoes in the oven, and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the broiler on, and broil for an additional 3-4 minutes. Remove from the oven.
Use a serving spoon to place the tomatoes on plates, garnish with tops if reserved, and go to town!
I served these baked tomatoes along with my turkey burgers, which I highly recommend!
Feta Stuffed Baked Tomatoes
4 large vine ripened tomatoes
3/4 cup crumbled fat-free feta cheese
1/4 cup plain panko breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp. vidalia onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
Preheat oven to 350°, and spray a baking dish with non-stick spray.
Rinse and dry the tomatoes. Remove the tops of the tomatoes, reserving to garnish later, if desired. Use a spoon to cut down the ribs of each tomato, and remove the inside flesh. Place the flesh in a strainer, and remove the seeds. Coat the inside and outside of the tomato shells with olive oil cooking spray, and place in the greased casserole dish.
Roughly chop the tomato flesh, and dice up 2 Tbsp. of vidalia onion. Add to a pan over medium heat, with the minced garlic clove, red pepper flakes, dried parsley, dried oregano, and dried basil. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Remove the tomato mixture to a small mixing bowl. Add 1/4 cup of panko breadcrumbs, and 3/4 cup of crumbled feta cheese, stir to combine.
Evenly distribute the tomato/panko/feta mixture among the four tomato shells. Top with additional panko and feta, sprinkling with dried oregano and basil. Place the tomatoes in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn on the broiler and broil for an additional 3-4 minutes, or until feta starts to brown.
Remove from the oven and serve, garnishing with reserved tomato tops if desired.
Enjoy as a summer side or appetizer!