Call it heresy, but I'd much rather eat my summer tomatoes cooked than raw. This is one of my favorite summer side dishes, adapted from the New York Times's Temporary Vegetarian column: tomato halves stuffed with a green tangle of zucchini, onions, pistachios, and parsley. Don't skip the sprinkle of parsley at the end—the contrast between cooked and fresh parsley kind of makes the dish. —ieatthepeach
Test Kitchen Notes
Though the recipe from which it was adapted recalled the flavors of the Marrakesh souk, ieatthepeach’s Moroccan Stuffed Tomatoes are actually more Mediterranean or Provençal in flavor, thanks to the garlic, thyme, and parsley, which accent the grated zucchini stuffing. The perfect make-ahead summer side, the dish is light (the filling isn’t weighed down by breadcrumbs or rice) yet substantial enough to be served as a vegetarian dinner party dish. Rather than cutting the tomatoes in half, you can also simply slice off the tops and scoop out the core, leaving you ample space in the tomato’s cavity for the pistachio-studded stuffing. —lauren
4 to 6 as a side dish
olive oil, plus more for greasing the pan
medium globe tomatoes
Salt to taste
shelled unsalted (raw) pistachios
medium yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
3 to 4
garlic cloves, minced
crushed red chile flakes, or to taste
Preheat the oven to 350° F and position a rack in the middle. Lightly brush a 9- × 13-inch baking dish with olive oil.
Cut each tomato in half around the equator and use a spoon to scoop out the insides. Sprinkle the cleaned cavity of each tomato lightly with salt, then lay the tomato halves cut side down on paper towels to drain while you prep the filling.
In a large skillet, toast pistachios over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they’re golden and fragrant. Transfer the nuts to a cutting board and roughly chop; set aside.
Return the skillet to the heat, add oil, and increase the heat to medium-high. When the oil shimmers, add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the onion is very soft and starting to brown. Add garlic, thyme, and chile flakes, and sauté for 30 seconds to a minute, or until fragrant. Add zucchini and sauté for about 2 minutes, or until the zucchini is just beginning to soften. Remove from the heat and mix in pistachios and about 3/4 of the parsley. Season with salt to taste.
Place the drained tomato halves, cut side up, in the greased baking dish. Divide the filling evenly among the tomatoes. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the tomatoes are soft and the filling is golden on top.
Remove the tomatoes from the oven, and let cool for at least 10 minutes. Top each tomato with some of the reserved parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.