Make Ahead

Rachel Roddy's Roman-Style Stuffed Tomatoes With Rice

May 23, 2018
7 Ratings
Photo by Emiko
  • Prep time 55 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This Roman dish of rice-stuffed tomatoes on a bed of potato wedges will have you looking forward to good tomatoes all summer long. It was one of the first dishes I tried from Rachel Roddy's first cookbook, *My Kitchen in Rome* (also known as *Five Quarters*. These tomatoes are versatile—they make a meal in themselves, but can also serve as a side dish to simple grilled or roast meat.

A few tips: Go for ripe, yes, but more importantly tasty and FIRM tomatoes that will hold their shape well while baking. Rachel's original recipe calls for the double the potatoes; go with your appetite. Consider the addition of fresh parsley, oregano or mint. Only use a rice that you would use for cooking risotto—arborio, carnaroli, or Vialone Nano, for example. If you have very large tomatoes, add an extra spoonful or two of rice (Rachel calls for 10 tablespoons). —Emiko

What You'll Need
  • 8 firm, tasty round tomatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 8 basil leaves, torn (and/or mint, parsley or oregano)
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 tablespoons arborio rice (or other risotto rice)
  • 1 pound roasting potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 2 pinches salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Cut off the tops of the tomatoes and reserve them for later. Scoop out the seeds, juice and flesh inside the tomatoes with a teaspoon and collect in a bowl. Blend this mixture then strain through a sieve to remove the seeds (alternatively, use a mouli or food mill to puree the tomato and remove the seeds).
  2. Sprinkle the insides of the empty tomatoes with some salt and turn upside down over some kitchen paper to drain any excess liquid.
  3. Add the garlic, basil, three-quarters of the olive oil and the rice to the tomato. Season generously with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Let this rice and tomato mixture sit at least 45 minutes.
  4. Heat oven to 180° C/ 350° F.
  5. Toss the potato wedges with the rest of the olive oil, sprinkle well with salt and place them at the bottom of a casserole dish or baking tray.
  6. Fill each tomato until three-quarters full, put the tops of the tomatoes back on like a lid and nestle the tomatoes on top of the potatoes. Bake for 1-1 1/4 hours or until the potatoes are golden and cooked through, the tomatoes are shriveled, and the rice is tender. Best when left to sit slightly (Rachel suggests half an hour) before serving, but these are also delicious cold.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Tatyana Hanley
    Tatyana Hanley
  • Barbra Fite
    Barbra Fite
  • Emiko
  • Sylviabors

10 Reviews

Sylviabors September 26, 2020
I’m obsessed with this dish. I’ve made it multiple times. It takes longer than noted perhaps. The leftover tomatoes reheated days later are even better than day of. Currently have an experiment of multiple days marinading rice in fridge to encounter last tomato. I’m using a mint hybrid called “chocolate” mint that smells like oregano.
CA September 21, 2020
This looked delicious: unfortunately the arborio rice (which I let soak for 60") needed less time to cook than the potatoes (cut at 1/4 inch) sticks--- the rice turned out mushy & the potatoes undone (needed another 30 minutes). Any thoughts?
Jill September 6, 2020
Do you think these will work with Spanish paella rice?
Kathryn G. September 5, 2020
These were delicious. A very nice simple dinner with a salad. I might slice my potatoes a little thinner next time, as some were just al dente. I just threw them in a pan for a moment. The tomatoes were perfect.
Coreyander September 4, 2020
I made this amazing dish today with tomatoes from my garden... following your recipe and I’m disappointed that the rice is still crunchy. Any suggestions? My home smells amazing though!
Emiko September 5, 2020
I'm so sorry to hear that! I have never encountered this problem in the many, many times I've cooked this dish, but I suspect it would probably be either that the rice may have needed a longer soaking time, or more liquid than what you were able to get from your tomatoes (it should be well-covered with tomato liquid and after the marinating time you'll see it's no longer covered as the rice has soaked up a lot of the liquid). The other thing I could suggest to save your tomatoes right now is to return them to the oven to keep cooking them -- perhaps covered so that they steam a bit.
LisaNY July 18, 2019
Hi! This recipe looks fantastic. Just a quick the arborio rice Cooked b
Emiko July 18, 2019
No it isn't, it cooks with the tomato!
Tatyana H. September 26, 2018
Made these tonight for dinner with tomatoes from my garden! No leftovers--- they were that good! Thank you for sharing the recipe.
Barbra F. June 20, 2018
Ate these all over Rome and loved them. I have made them a few times. Can't wait for good tomatoes to try this recipe. Thanks