Years ago while living in Colombia, I became enamored with Andres Carne de Res, then a rustic grill in the village of Chia, north of Bogota. I didn’t own a car, so the only way to get there was by taxi or bus, but making the trek was so worth it. The place served the most amazing variety of meats, and the meat lovers on the teaching staff found the place intoxicating. One of the sides they served was grilled tomatoes stuffed with fluffy mashed potatoes, which seemed to go perfectly with any of the grilled meats.
I don’t have a recipe for those tomatoes, so this is my version. I make the mashed potatoes with a little cream cheese, which seems to help them stand up to the hot tomato juices, and flavor them with our homegrown parsley and chives. After stuffing the tomatoes, I broil them in the oven or toaster oven because I like the bit of golden brown on the top.
I use beefy slicing tomatoes with flattened bottoms so the tomatoes will stand up after broiling and scoop out the juicy middle to make room for the potatoes. A melon baller makes the scooping job very easy.
[Thanks to the U.S. Potato Board for featuring this recipe on Potato Goodness!]
Mashed Potato-Stuffed Tomatoes
- 3-quart heavy bottom pot with lid
- hand mixer
- melon baller
- 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes (peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks)
- 2 ounces cream cheese (at room temperature, cut into small chunks)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (softened)
- 1/3 cup half & half (at room temperature)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 6 medium slicing tomatoes (about 6 ounces each, with flat bottoms)
- In the 3-quart pot, add the potato chunks and add enough water to float the potatoes. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium, keeping the potatoes at a medium boil until fork tender, about 10 to 12 minutes. Drain well and keep in the pot.
- Stir in the cream cheese and butter until they melt, then whip in the half & half with a hand mixer until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in the parsley and chives.
- Carefully cut a wide circle around the stem of each tomato and remove it, then use a melon baller to remove the seeds and juice, leaving an opening about 2-inches wide in each tomato. Divide the mashed potatoes among the tomatoes, filling each past the top of the tomato.
- Place the tomatoes on a foil-lined backing sheet and broil in the oven or toaster oven until the top of the stuffing is lightly browned and the tomatoes feel a little soft, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove and allow to cool for 2 to 3 minutes, then serve.