Exotic Appetizers

Stuffed Tomatoes

Unique American Appetizers

When a person thinks of an American appetizer, a fried food like mozzarella sticks or chicken wings comes to mind. But do all American appetizers consist of food that is fried and unhealthy? If you go to a fast food chain or a franchise restaurant, probably. But there are a lot of other flavors that make America unique. Where else can you live and combine ingredients from many different countries and label it your own?

Using rich ingredients from other countries can give something normally thought of as bland a great flavor. For instance, chicken is plain when it is served with no spices, breading or marinade. But throw in some spices from an Asian country and it suddenly tastes wonderful. The same can be said for certain vegetables.

Stuffed Tomatoes

This recipe uses a plain old tomato, found in many gardens across the United States and around the world. What makes for exotic appetizers is when you take those tomatoes and combine it with other ingredients that aren’t so common, such as cheese from around the world. So, take unique cheese and combine it with something so American like grits, and you will have a wonderful surprise.

What you will need:

  • ½ c dry grits
  • 1 ½ c water
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1 ⅓ c ricotta cheese
  • ⅓ c parmesan cheese
  • ½ c Asiago cheese, grated
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ c parsley, chopped
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 tomatoes

How you make it:

In a saucepan, mix the grits, water and ¾ tsp of the salt. Cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Simmer for fifteen to twenty minutes or until the grits become soft. Remove from the heat.

In a large bowl, mix the eggs, cooled grits and cheeses. Stir in the garlic powder, parsley, pepper and salt. Mix until all of the ingredients are combined and set aside.

Slice the top of each tomato off. Hollow it out with a utensil or spoon. Rinse and set aside.

Using a tablespoon, fill each hollowed out tomato with the mixture. Place them on a greased cookie sheet. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 to 40 minutes. The grits will begin to turn light brown on the top. Remove from the oven and cool for five to ten minutes before serving. Serve plain or with crackers and chips.