21 January 2013

Tomatoes Stuffed with Corn and Black Beans

We've been 'homeless' for a 1.5 weeks.  We've been living without my essential kitchen stuff for 1.5 months.  We've been living without my 'non-essentials' for 5.5 months.

I say we are homeless, but we are really staying with family while transitioning from Aaron's temporary training base to our 'permanent' base in Japan (yay!).  We are grateful for this for many, many reasons, but one thing that I was excited about was being able to cook real meals in a real (really nice) kitchen.  While living in our TDY furnished apartment, we didn't have a lot of kitchen equipment, and I didn't want to invest in lots of spices, or stock up on food, because we knew we would be moving so soon.  We ate plenty while living there, but I just felt like all my meals fell a little short.  All that was probably just an excuse, and I was just being lazy...but being in a nice kitchen with multiple ovens and plenty of counter space and spices and condiments and every pot and pan I could ever use....ahhh....it just feels good.

Not all my meals at our temporary home were lame.  This one for example was a big hit with us.  We don't eat a lot of stuffed tomatoes, but both of us always enjoy them when we do.  I served it with some sort of rice concoction (mushrooms, onions, etc.), and we ate every bit of it.  Don't underestimate it, we were plenty full from this meal.

For my vegan/gluten/veggie friends: Just lay off the cheese and breadcrumbs.  If you want something to help bind things together, I would mash some of those beans.

Tomatoes Stuffed with Corn and Black Beans
  • 4 beefsteak tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 3/4 cup corn kernels (from 1 large ear)
  • 2 scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 to 1 small jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 cup drained, rinsed black beans
  • 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar (2 ounces), divided
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs, divided
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Slice top 1/2 inch from tomatoes and scoop out flesh (reserve for another use; see below). 
  2. In a medium skillet, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium. Add corn and scallion whites and cook until crisp-tender, 3 minutes. 
  3. Transfer to a medium bowl and stir in jalapeno, beans, 1/4 cup cheddar, 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Coat an 8-inch square baking dish with 1 teaspoon oil. Brush tomato skins with 1 teaspoon oil, season all over with salt and pepper, and place in dish. Fill tomatoes with corn mixture. 
  5. Combine remaining 1/4 cup cheddar, 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, and 2 teaspoons oil, season with salt and pepper, and divide among tomatoes. 
  6. Tent dish loosely with foil and bake 10 minutes. Uncover and bake until tomatoes are soft and breadcrumbs are deep golden, about 5 minutes more.

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