A flavor combination I love is that of sauerkraut and tomatoes, and I enjoy coming up with various baked dishes to include these flavors. While I was at the market today, I found some beautiful tomatoes. I hand picked the largest of the lot, and decided to design a dish around them.
Recipe by: Designs by Jeanne R
3 or 4 very large tomatoes
1 cup potatoes, cubed (small)
8 oz. ground pork, or about 2 brats or other sausage (removed from casings)
8 oz. ground beef
1 15 oz. can of sauerkraut, including the juice
3/4 cup water (or a little more if needed)
4 tablespoons tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon caraway seed
1/4 teaspoon dill seed
1 tablespoon oil
1 tablespoon butter (optional)
Swiss cheese slices
In a skillet, brown the ground pork and beef in the oil until cooked through. Drain and set aside.
Slice the top of each tomato, then using a melon ball tool, scoop out the insides and save for another use, set aside.
Add the sauerkraut and tomato paste to the skillet, and allow to simmer for a few minutes. Stir in the water, dill & caraway seeds, then place the bay leaves on top. Allow to barely simmer for about 10 minutes, then add the cubed potatoes. Continue to simmer for about 20 more minutes. Remove from the heat and discard the bay leaves, and stir in the butter. The butter will add a little silkiness to the dish, but can be omitted to lessen the calorie count. Correct the seasonings if needed.
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the tomatoes in a baking dish which has been lightly coated with a non stick cooking spray. Stuff each tomato with the skillet mixture, and spoon any remaining mixture into the baking dish. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil, and bake for about 30 – 40 minutes, or until the tomatoes are the desired firmness. Remove the foil, add a slice of Swiss cheese over each tomato, then broil for a minute or two (watch carefully so it doesn’t burn), until the cheese has melted and has browned a little.
Serve with toasted rye bread and butter.
Aside from adding texture and a little substance to this dish, the small amount of potatoes soak up some of the “bite” of these big flavors, and mellow it in a wonderful sort of way.
I hope you enjoy as much as I did creating this dish!