Stuffed tomatoes are a great way to bring a little bit of Spain to your picnic, barbecue or party. The great thing about them is that they are actually quite simple to make but they look extremely fancy, and taste delicious!
The tomato is a wonderful food and it is thanks to the Spanish that the humble food has become such a worldwide favourite. Tomatoes are actually native to South America where it was used by the native population for centuries. However when Columbus and the later conquistadors arrived to the continent, they decided to bring examples of the tomato plant back to Europe.
Cultivation of tomatoes in Europe began in the 1540s and they began to be consumed regularly during the 17th century. Tomatoes were first mentioned in European literature in a Herbal, a collection of notes about the various plants and their medicinal properties, written in 1544 by an Italian named Pietro Andrea Mattioli who called it 'the golden apple'.
The Spanish also took the tomato to their other colonies across the world, including the Caribbean and as far as the Philippines in South East Asia. From here the humble tomato spread across the rest of the Asian continent. Today, the tomato can be found in almost every country and is still a staple food in the Mediterranean and Spanish diet, something you will definitely see when you visit Spain.
Therefore what better way to have such a historical Spanish food in your life than making Tomates rellenos, or Stuffed tomatoes, which use the classic food as a container for a yummy filling. If you use the garlic mayonnaise called alioli, you will have truly completed a Spanish immersion in Spain and into the culture of Spanish food.
This recipe is extremely adaptable and you can stuff the tomatoes with whatever filling you like. However, we have suggested that use the typically Spanish garlic mayonnaise sauce, alioli. However, for those of you who don't like garlic, you can always replace the sauce with plain mayonnaise instead. This recipe is great for everyone too as it is suitable for vegetarians as well!