A solid favourite that has been cooked in my family for generations. The trick here is to not leave any gaps in the baking dish – hence the potatoes! You can use quartered large potatoes, or unpeeled well-washed kipflers (fingerlings). You can serve this dish as a main, accompanied by a lovely Greek salad. –VV
- 12 medium-sized tomatoes
- 1 zucchini (courgette), finely chopped
- 100 ml (3½ fl oz) olive oil, plus an extra
- 1 tablespoon 2 brown onions, chopped
- 4 spring (green) onions, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- small handful of dill, finely chopped
- small handful of mint, finely chopped
- small handful of parsley, finely chopped
- 200 g (7 oz/1 cup) long-grain white rice
- 4 potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste (concentrated purée)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F (fan-forced).
- Using a sharp knife, cut the tops off the tomatoes and reserve. Leaving the tomato skin intact, scoop out the flesh from each tomato using a teaspoon. Roughly chop the tomato flesh. Place in a bowl with the zucchini, along with any tomato juices.
- Place the tomato shells in an oiled baking dish and set aside.
- Pour 100 ml (3½ fl oz) olive oil into a frying pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion and the tomato and zucchini mixture for 5–6 minutes, or until softened.
- Add the spring onion, garlic, dill, mint and parsley and sauté for 2–3 minutes, until fragrant.
- Add the rice, stirring frequently for a further 5 minutes, until the rice is translucent.
- Stir in 125 ml (½ cup) water, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and set aside to cool slightly.
- Spoon the mixture into the tomato shells, to about three-quarters full, and replace the tops. Place the potatoes into any gaps between the tomatoes in the baking dish.
- In a bowl, mix together the extra tablespoon of olive oil, the tomato paste and 125 ml (½ cup) water. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and drizzle over the tomatoes.
- Transfer to the oven and bake for 45 minutes, lightly covering the dish with foil if the tomatoes are browning too quickly towards the end, and adding a little more water only if required.
- Cover with foil and bake for a further 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for a final 15 minutes, or until the tomatoes are nicely coloured.
- Delicious served warm or cold.