July 25, 2011

Les Tomates Farcies

Tomates Farcies

Every summer, gardens explode with an abundance of tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant and string beans. At the same time every food blog and cooking website explodes with an amazing variety of tomato, zucchini, eggplant and string bean recipes.

Boredom is not an option.

In my opinion, the classic French summer dish, Tomates Farcies, is never boring. Especially if you bake a big batch, freeze half, then heat some up for dinner in the middle of winter, when lazy summer days, and juicy summer tomatoes, are a distant memory.

Of course, there are many of us in France this year who are already considering summer a distant memory...


The recipe I use comes from Susan Herrmann Loomis' living in France memoir, One Rue Tatin.

Danie's Stuffed Tomatoes  
Tomates Farcies 
  • 2 slices fresh bread (about 2 ounces/60g each)
  • ½ cup/ 125ml whole milk
  • 4 pounds/ 2 kg juicy tomatoes
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons/30ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, green germ removed, minced
  • 8 ounces/250g button mushrooms, trimmed, wiped clean and diced
  • 1 ¾ pounds/875g lean ground pork
  • ¼ cup/10g fresh tarragon leaves*
  • 1 cup/10g loosely packed flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 large eggs
1. Preheat oven to 425° F / 220° C / gas 8.

2. Tear the bread into bite-sized pieces and place it in a small bowl. Cover it with the milk, press the bread down so it is completely covered, and let it sit until it has absorbed all the milk, about 30 minutes.

3. Slice the top off each tomato and reserve it. Remove the seeds and most of the inner pith of the tomatoes and discard. Lightly season each tomato inside with salt and pepper.

4. Heat the oil with the onions and garlic in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until the onions are translucent, about 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and transfer the onions and the garlic to a medium-size bowl. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have given up their juice and are tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer the mushrooms to the bowl of onions and garlic.

5. Add the bread and milk to the ingredients in the bowl, along with the pork. Mince the tarragon and the parsley together and add it to the bowl along with the eggs. Blend the mixture thoroughly, using your hands. Season with salt and pepper and blend well. Cook a teaspoon of the mixture and taste it for seasoning - adjust if necessary. (I must admit that I usually skip that last step)

6. Evenly divide the stuffing among the tomatoes, pressing it firmly into them, and mounding it above the edges of the tomato if necessary. Place the tops of the tomatoes atop the stuffing (another step I omitted) and bake until they become a deep gold, the stuffing is completely cooked, and the tomatoes are tender, about 1 hour. Remove and drizzle with pan juices.
6 to 8 servings

*I often use fresh rosemary or fresh thyme in place of the tarragon, which is difficult to find where we live Pin It


Sandy said...

Yummy! Thanks for the recipe!

Murissa Maurice said...

Nothing about this looks boring! Looks so tasty and something I will be cooking up this August when I return from my travels.

Thank you for joining The Wanderfull Traveler on Facebook as well!

The Wanderfull Traveler

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

This is a fantastic recipe, I would never have thought of freezing them what a great idea. Diane

Joy said...

Yum! These look delicious...but may omit the pork to keep them vegetarian.

helen tilston said...

I love this receipt and it will be made by me, possibly with beef mince.

Thanks so much - I love your blog

Emm said...

Oh, that looks so good. Your additional "vous amirez" at the bottom led me to a recipe for corn and potato chowder that also looked yummy, but now I've lost it. Off to rummage through your old pixels.

Bienvenue chez French Girl in Seattle... said...

Great post, merci. Ma grand-mere used to make the best tomates farcies I have ever had. I am going to try this recipe. Who knows, for once, my cooking might actually turn out ok? Veronique aka French Girl in Seattle

Maureen said...

These look delicious! I want some for dinner.

Figs, Bay, Wine said...

oo I'm going to try this. I'm going to try this tomorrow : )

Thank you!

flowercityfoodie.com said...

Do you freeze them after they are already cooked, or before they go in the oven? Also, any reheating advice for when they come out of the freezer this winter?

Sharon T said...

Oh, your tomatoes are so beautiful! I am still waiting for mine to ripen. I have made this recipe and it is wonderful. I've never tried to freeze them though, I may try that this year. Thank you!

Emm said...

Have you ever tried this with ground lamb instead of ground pork? Wonder if it would work as well?

Chez Loulou said...

You're welcome!

Enjoy your travels and hope you give this recipe a try. I'm sure you'll love it!

I would never have thought of freezing them until a friend suggested it. I'll thank them for you. :)

Chez Loulou said...

There are many versions of stuffed tomatoes that use rice instead of meat, so it can easily be made into a vegetarian dish. Enjoy!

I'm sure it would be just as good with beef. Please let me know if you try it and what you think, and thank you for commenting. :)

Is this it? http://chezlouloufrance.blogspot.com/2008/11/corn-chowder.html

Chez Loulou said...

My Italian grandmother used to make something similar too. I love traditional recipes like this.

Get cooking!

How did they turn out?

Chez Loulou said...

I cook them before freezing and since I don't have a microwave, warm them slowly in the oven.
Hope you like the recipe!

We eat as many tomatoes as we can in the summer. They are awful in the winter so I never buy them.

I never have, but I'm sure it would be delicious. Give it a try and let us know!

croquecamille said...

Mmm, I love tomates farcies. I made some a couple of weeks ago that were stuffed with goat cheese that I mashed up with some fresh basil, garlic, and egg white (çause I had some lying around). Fantastic!

Emm said...

You had one for corn & potato, earlier, which I found. Will try this Corn Chowder one, too, as it looks delish! Milles mercis.

Lauren said...

That looks great! I read the book - loved it! Are you really having a Summer like ours here in the Northwest??? We have had an entire Spring and Summer of gloom and rain, with exception of a few days! Had to escape to Eastern Oregon to find the sun. The sun is out today, but it's cold by Summer standards. Hasn't the weather gotten weird?

Chez Loulou said...

I am definitely trying the chèvre stuffed tomatoes next time!
Tonight we're having brebis and thyme roasted tomatoes with an arugula salad.
Hope you've had a good weekend!

Hope you enjoy both the recipes. :)

I enjoyed the book as well. There are some great recipes in there too!
The weather has definitely been weird this year. Our summer has not been as hot as in the past several years, which I am loving. I miss the cool Pacific NW summers (don't think I'm crazy!) but the heat here can be relentless.
I hope you get some sun!