Appetizers/Snacks · Brunch · Salads/Soup

Bharwaan Tamatar-Indian Style Stuffed Tomatoes

Living in Las Vegas is so much fun.I call it my second home.A city,I personally feel everyone should see once in their lifetime for it’s a different ball game altogether when it comes to defying the meaning of entertainment.The first time I went to the strip,the only thing I was doing for initial one hour was to swing my head in all directions possible to catch the glimpse of the glitz while sipping on the yard long glasses which were the additional wonder of that day.You walk into a casino and there’s this sudden thrash of loud music,gaudy yet ornate decor and lots and lots of people.I call it the MAD crowd…mad about enjoying life, about letting their hair down and experimenting with their fortune.Walking into a casino is a great stress buster on the other hand, every time I have walked in with a cluttered mind, feeling low,I seem to forget my worries for some time, its like a magic wand erasing all the tensions for a while when you see everyone around letting down with a common mission-to enjoy!

P always says that the downside of being a local is that we wont be able to enjoy the stay in luxurious hotels here.It is our secret wish to lock our house for 2 days sometime, take a cab, grab few clothes and stay over at one of the casino resorts and experience the king size life for few days out there.But did I tell you that locals enjoy discount rates at casinos and shows?I love the pace and quality of life in this city.Love the landscape which is all about tall,lush palm trees and succulents but still a drive through the valley is bound to leave you asking for more.I do not miss sky scrapers here; I like the homely feel of apartment homes and condos.The weather is extremely hot & dry,I have humidifiers in the house and battling the scorpions during summer months becomes a challange.The ONLY thing I miss a lot is the rains!With almost 340 days of full sun, I strive hard to save my little home garden from the gusty winds and aridity.Sometimes it just feels so dry that I have a hidden fear of not getting enough water to drink.


Tomatoes remind me of all those summer evenings at home when mom used to quarter them,sprinkle some salt and gave us a bowl each before dinner.Let me confess I do not like raw tomatoes all on their own. I need bread,cheese or some other veggie paired along to eat them raw.Another point of stark contrast from P who pops them into his mouth like a candy.This is one of my summer favorites, stuffed tomato recipe which my mom used to make during the times when abundant tomato produce hit the market.You can put any kind of stuffing – this is my indian way of doing it.Normally, paneer [ indian cheese] is widely used for stuffing, I like the tang of cheddar more instead.I usually like to serve them as appetizers, you can make a gravy and serve them as a main dish.Pair great with cheese puffs or a dry side with lentils.Recipe below:-

Ingredients:[Serves 2-3]

Printable Recipe

  • 6 medium size, firm tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil mixed with 1/4 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp white poppy seeds to sprinkle on top
  • 3 medium size potatoes, boiled
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup frozen yellow corn
  • 1/4 cup mild cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 green chillies,chopped
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp red chilli flakes [adjust to taste]
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds,crushed
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1 /2 tsp dry mango powder [ amchoor]
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3 tbsp golden raisins [optional]
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp olive oil

Preparing the tomatoes:-
  • Wash the tomatoes, pat them dry and using a sharp knife cut off  a about 1″ thick slice on top of the tomatoes.Reserve the tops.Note :- Just check that all the tomatoes rest on their bases, if not cut a thin slice from bottom to balance them.
  • Run a sharp knife all around the edge of the tomatoes and using a melon baller or scoop,take out the seeds and pulp. Tip:-Do not discard the pulp, refrigerate/ freeze it,can be used in curries or gravies later.
  • Using a paper towel pat dry the inside of the tomatoes and rub them with seasoned olive oil inside and outside.Set aside in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Making the stuffing :-
  • Thaw the peas and corn if using frozen.Mash the boiled potatoes thoroughly so that only tiny bits remain.
  • In any heavy bottomed utensil, heat the oil on medium and add cumin seeds and green chillies to it, fry for 30 seconds.Add the ginger garlic paste and cook for 1 minute.Add the chopped onions next and cook until they turn golden brown.About 7 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the turmeric powder, red chilli flakes and crushed coriander seeds.Cook for 2 minutes, taking care not to burn the spices.
  • Turn the heat high and add the mashed potatoes, peas ,corn and combine everything.Add salt and let cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.The mixture should be ready when you can smell the aroma.
  • Remove from heat and add garam masala, grated cheddar cheese,raisins.Combine well.Let the stuffing cool down for 5-8 minutes.

Making the tomatoes:-
  • Preheat the oven to 375 F/190 C.
  • Make balls out of the potatoes mixture and fill it into the refrigerated tomatoes.Do not press down.
  • Transfer the stuffed tomatoes to a greased baking dish or cast iron skillet,cover stuffed tomatoes with the tops and bake for 15-18 minutes or until the skins start to shrivel and the tomatoes are soft to touch.Towards the end of baking , sprinkle the poppy seeds and continue to bake till done.Note that for the last few minutes you need to keep a watch to avoid tomato skins from rupturing.
  • Serve warm.
  • Instead of baking, you can cook the tomatoes on stove top covered over medium -low heat.You will need to separately toast poppy seeds and sprinkle before serving.
The composition of main dish pictures is inspired by White on Rice Couple.The beautiful setting in their pictures stuck in my memory for days.

39 thoughts on “Bharwaan Tamatar-Indian Style Stuffed Tomatoes

  1. You have a really unique perspective on Vegas. You make it sound like a magical place, homely yet an escape from the everyday. And I can’t decide if I envy your warm sunny days or not. It rained here this weekend – and its almost summer-time.
    The stuffed tomatoes sound really, really delicious.

  2. On my bucket list is (at least) one week living a king sized life at Vegas – it sounds like a magical place to live (but the scorpions could be a freak out). Love that you have so much sunshine & hot days, just thinking about it snaps away the grey days we’re living through down here in Oz. Loved this post & I don’t mind in the least you sharing your hometown with us……, more more!! 😉
    Fresh tomatoes tasting of sunshine WOW…, love your take on these too, just beautiful 🙂

  3. Oh, Las Vegas. Too many fun memories there, and that’s so great you get a local discount! These stuffed tomatoes look fresh and delicious. What a wonderful summer side dish. I love your presentation.

  4. I now want to check out Vegas.. the way you described it makes it seem so .. fun!

    The tomatoes .. look and sound perfect! I bet they taste even better 🙂

  5. Las Vegas sounds to be a round the clock entertainment spot. Glad that you are having a ball there. Also, stuffed tomatoes look so fulfilling and droolworthy.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  6. I have never made stuffed tomatoes… wonder why actually! I totally love tomatoes and buy baskets full of them when they are in season 🙂 I thought i have tried all possible recipes with it but some how missed this one… lol
    Will make it for sure!

  7. Tanvi… loved your description of LV. But Scorpions?!?? OMG… I’d be freaking scared.
    The stuffed tomatoes are mouth watering…but alas, my husband doesn’t eat tomatoes…he doesn’t even like too much of it in curries! And i’m out of words to praise ur photography skills! 🙂

  8. First, that photo with the vine-ripened tomatoes looks amazing! Second, this looks like a great stuffed tomato recipe. I’ve tried my hand at stuffed bell peppers but fell short on flavor. This recipe looks like it wouldn’t have any trouble in that department!

  9. I’d love to visit Las Vegas one day. It looks so colorful and full of life. And maybe I can visit you and you could cook for me ;)…
    These tomatoes look so lovely.
    *kisses* HH

  10. I loved stuffed tomatoes..never had them with your combination..
    will have to try these very soon..
    as always your styling and photography are beautiful

  11. Hah….ure lucky at leats u get a few days of rain….unlike here where its sunshine 365 days a year 🙂 I’ve tried stuffed peppers in the past but not stuffed tomatoes. Yout tomatoes still looks so yummy even after theyve been bakes. My peppers turned into a soggy mess after baking 🙁

  12. Stuffed tomatoes are always a plus on my table. I love how much details and time you put into thoese. They must’ve been a lot of work.

  13. Hi Tanvi! Oh I love your stuffed tomatoes! You did such a detailed work on removing seeds and all…and these tomatoes are not big one, so you require a delicate work. They are beautiful to look at and I’m sure these tastes good too! I’ve been to Vegas 2-3 times, and I like there. There are so many good restaurants to visit…..I don’t gamble but I still enjoy the unique city. I wish I knew you before so I could pay a visit! 😉 Maybe next time!

  14. Vegas is always a cool place to spend holidays but you are fortunate to make it your second home! Your stuffed tomatoes are too good and the poppy sprinkle make it awesome!

  15. Can you beleive I’ve never been to Las Vegas!!! I need to make a trip soon. 😀

    I remember you telling me about the disappointing farmers’ market, hope it improves.

    Love these tomatoes, so light and fresh in time for summer. I will definitely try these out. 🙂

  16. I remember you telling me about this sometime back if I’m not mistaken? Looks fabulous. I love eating tomatoes in all form in summer – just find it so refreshing. I was just showing this to M and looks like his all interested.

  17. I didnt’ realize you lived in Vegas! Now I really have an excuse to come visit. And we can hang out at the hotels and pretend that you’re a tourist. Deal?

    I love the sound of this stuffing!

  18. This is such an original recipe. Love that you added raisins to the stuffing. Sounds like you are having fun living in Vegas!

  19. I love Vegas .. i might have told you this a lot of times in the past 🙂 We have been there once for about 6 days and we had SO MUCH FUN! Arvind likes quieter place and so he loves California and I am happy here too .. but given a chance to visit Vegas .. my answer will always be YES 🙂
    Your pics are gorgeous dear .. love the presentation and composition. 🙂

  20. wish to get imported there for some days and let lost in the mad crowd and let the magic work on me…to get relaxed…well wish ur dream to live life in king size come soon! love the bright combo in the food, red yellow and green beauty, i too attracted from worc, they bring great pic…btw wat are cookies in the side it took my attention!!

  21. Oh yum is all I can say!! I always drool over your delicious food, Tanvi. The semolina pudding from the previous post looks sooooo tempting. 🙂

  22. You have made me plan to visit Vegas for my next vacation gal. It is true that some places help us to forget our worries and just live the present moment. I get the same feeling when I visit New York city. Tall buildings, busy people and there is something which makes me feel good about that place. I loved the color contrast you have brought in your pictures. They are simply gorgeous.

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