Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes

Follow me on Twitter or Facebook!

Summer means tomatoes. Real tomatoes. Tomatoes grown on the vine under the sun.  This is the time to enjoy what tomatoes should really taste like and get all of the great benefits from them. To learn more about agricultural tomatoes and locally, seasonally grown tomatoes, I suggest reading Tomatoland or at least this article about the book.

Quinoa stuffed tomatoes came about in my laziness to cook and urgent need to use up all of the tomatoes I bought at the farmer’s market. Like most of my recipes, this one is short on time but big on flavor and nutrients. Let me know what you think in the comments!

Ingredients
4 large, round tomatoes, washed and sliced in 1/2 lengthwise
⅓ cup cooked quinoa
¼ cup finely crumbled goat cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons bread crumbs (optional)
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon chopped basil
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Tomatoes are making an appearance at the Farmers Markets

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Using a teaspoon, remove the seeds from the tomatoes. You are trying to create enough room to hold the filling. Place the tomato halves, cut side down, on paper towels to drain, about 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Using clean hands, gently toss the drained tomato halves in the oil mixture until coated. Marinate the tomatoes for at least 10 minutes.

In a small bowl mix together quinoa, goat cheese, bread crumbs, and lemon zest. Taste the mixture and add a pinch of salt and pepper if needed.

Place the marinated tomato halves, cut side up, on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Fill each tomato half with the quinoa crumb filling.  Drizzle with the remaining olive oil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until slightly softened and the underside of the tomatoes are brown.

Arrange the cooked tomatoes on a serving platter. Sprinkle the chopped basil over the tomatoes and serve immediately.

Nutritional Goodness

Tomatoes contain lycopene, which is known for its antioxidant and cancer-preventing properties. In addition to lycopene, the vitamin B6, niacin, potassium and folate found in tomatoes are potent protectors against heart disease. 

Quinoa is a supergrain. It can supply us with all of the body’s requirements: carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Quinoa is gluten free and has larger quantities of calcium, fat, iron, phosphorus, and B vitamins than many other grains. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, quinoa offers benefits to the heart and is easy to digest too. Also, it is a good source of magnesium and phosphorus, and a very good source of manganese.

Basil is considered the “king of herbs” and is revered as “holy plant” in many Asian traditions. Basil leaves contains many health benefiting essential oils that have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. This herb also has flavonoids, which have been found to protect cell structures as well as chromosomes from radiation and oxygen-based damage.

Olive oil, a key component of the Mediterranean Diet, has  high concentration of monounsaturated fatty acids. Studies have shown that olive oil offers protection against heart disease by controlling LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels while raising HDL (the “good” cholesterol) levels.

Drain the tomatoes to avoid sogginess.

Marinate the tomatoes for "mmmm" flavor.

Bake until skin is tender and top browns.

Garnish for taste and aesthetics.

Club Dine In! is on Twitter and Facebook. Follow @clubdinein for daily health, fitness, and social news, recipes and delicious tips! Join the Club Dine In! community on Facebook to connect with like-minded individuals and find out about exclusive Club Dine! events. Be sure to sign-up to receive posts and updates straight into your inbox!

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes

  1. Pingback: The Healthy Pantry | Club Dine In!

  2. Pingback: Farm to Table Brunch | Club Dine In!

  3. Pingback: Farmers Market Finds: An Orange Proposal | Club Dine In!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s