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Panzanella Stuffed Heirloom Tomatoes


4 large heirloom tomatoes, about 3 pounds
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 large shallots, finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (such as seedless lemon)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
3 cups croutons (packaged or homemade)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan


Slice off top 1/4 inch of tomatoes and reserve. Core tomatoes, discarding cores. Scoop out seeds and tomato flesh with spoon and transfer to strainer set over bowl to drain. Reserve tomato water and flesh. Discard seeds.

Season inside of tomatoes with salt and pepper; set upside down on plate to drain while preparing panzanella.

In bowl, combine shallots, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, basil, croutons, and Parmesan. Coarsely chop drained tomato flesh. Add to bowl along with about 1/4 cup of reserved tomato water. Toss well to evenly moisten croutons. Season to taste. Add more oil, tomato water, and lemon juice, as needed.

Stuff each tomato with panzanella. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil on top, then garnish with reserved tomato tops. Chill until ready to serve.