Tomatoes are in full season right now, and we had a huge harvest of large, red tomatoes this weekend, with all of us picking out almost 50 tomatoes from our backyard! So naturally, you are going to see some interesting Tomato recipes on this blog, like the Heirloom Tomato Salad, the Tuscan Tomato & Red Pepper Soup, or the Cherry Tomato & Avocado Pasta – all these capture the essence of fresh tomatoes while pairing them with ingredients that only add to the flavor of the recipe.
When it comes to recipes, I love to experiment and see how I can improve a tested recipe. So for this one, I combined the idea of using Cheese-Stuffed Tomatoes that we use as appetizers, and add them to a rich and creamy Indian-style gravy that makes a perfect accompaniment to any flatbread or rice dish. For the success of this recipe, you need to choose fresh and firm tomatoes, so they can be easily scooped out and filled with stuffing. Choose medium to large tomatoes as they will shrink once they cook in the gravy.
I have used boiled potatoes, green peas and shredded cheese for the filling. However, this recipe is very versatile and you can use whatever you like to stuff the tomatoes. Paneer would be an ideal choice for a rich Indian gravy, but you can use only cheese, or a mix of boiled and mashed veggies like broccoli, potatoes, carrots, zucchini, corn in such a way that even the pickiest eaters will find hard to find and resist! Pair this with Homemade Tandoori Naan for an unforgettable Indian meal that’s really easy to pull off, and presentable enough to impress the most picky guests.
- For the Tomatoes:
- 4 large tomatoes
- 1 cup shredded mixed cheese
- 1 cup boiled and mashed potatoes
- ¼ cup boiled green peas
- ½ tsp garlic salt
- 1 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
- pinch of salt, adjust to taste
- For the Gravy:
- 1 cup tomato puree
- ½ onion – finely chopped
- ½ tsp jeera(cumin seeds)
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- ½ cup heavy cream or whipping cream
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp garam masala powder
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tbsp oil
- Wash the tomatoes and cut off their tops, scooping out the pulp from the center, and keep it aside to use in the gravy later.
- Mix the mashed potatoes, boiled peas, garlic salt, chopped cilantro and scoop it into the cleaned tomato bowls, filling them upto the middle. Now take the shredded cheese and sprinkle it on top of the potato filling.
- Heat oil in a wide and deep non-stick pan, add jeera and allow it to splutter. Then add the onions and saute until slightly golden brown. Add ginger garlic paste and saute for one more minute. Add salt, turmeric and coriander powders and mix well.
- Now add the tomato puree, along with the reserved tomato juice, chili powder and saute until oil oozes out on the side and the gravy thickens. Add about ½ cup water and allow it to boil for 2 mins. Add the garam masala powder, and adjust salt if required.
- As the gravy thickens, remove it from the heat, and stir in the heavy cream and mix well.
- Place the tomatoes into the pan gingerly, and cover them with some gravy. Reduce heat to low flame, and place the pan back onto the stove. Cover with a lid and let it simmer for another 6-7 minutes.
- When ready to serve, transfer to a serving plate, being gentle with the tomatoes, and sprinkle some more chopped cilantro on the top.