Monday, September 29, 2008

Tomato Rice Baked in Bell Pepper

Hubby and I were able to taste a baked tomato rice in a popular restaurant here in the heart of Manila. It was so creamy, so delicious. Hubby wanted me to recreate it here at home!

So, this dish is my first attempt. I was preparing my ingredients when I spied my Thai basil plant growing profusely. The picture here was taken when I newly bought it from the plant nursery. It has grown more leaves since then.

I knew the rice do not have the taste of thai basil, but has sweet basil. But I so very wanted to use these leaves, so I gathered a handful and threw it in the rice as well... :)

1 1/2 C Japanese round rice, washed once
4 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 tomatoes, seeded, diced
3 T tomato paste
1 bell pepper, seeded, chopped
2 1/2 C Chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 C chopped thai basil

1. In a big skillet, or cooking pan, heat up some olive oil. Saute the onions until softened.

2. Add in the tomatoes and saute until juices come out, around 3 minutes. Add in the bell peppers, tomato paste. Mix everything up for a while, then add in the rice. Add in the chicken broth. Let boil and lower heat. Check in once in a while, stir to mix, and to make sure the rice is not burning.

3. When rice is cooked, add in chopped basil. Mix everything to let the remaining heat cook the basil leaves. You can also add in some more drops of olive oil for more flavor and shine to the rice. Season with salt and pepper.

4. You can serve as is, or bake it in a bell pepper.

I just wanted to show you the size of the bell pepper I used...

5. Clean the bell pepper well. Cut off the top portion. Remove the seeds and the insides.

6. Stuff the bell pepper with the cooked rice. Brush the skin of the bell pepper with olive oil. Bake in a preheated oven at 375F for 15 to 20 minutes.

7. Serve warm. You may actually top this with cheese (now, why didn't I do that?)

The tomato rice is flavorful, creamy and delicious. The thai basil gave the rice dish a lemony basil flavor. Delicious but a bit on the strong flavor side. Maybe next time, I should use my sweet basil instead.

Sharing this rice dish with the Grow Your Own event. This is a twice a month food event launched by Andrea of Andrea's Recipes to celebrate the plants and food we grow ourselves and the dishes we make using these homegrown produce. This edition's host is Denise of Chez Us. To see last edition's delicious entries, please check out the wonderful round-up done by Noobcook.


Mochachocolata Rita said...

hehehe i am a sucker of anything cooked in/stuffed into i havent done it before. I always love tomato rice but I havent tried combining it with peppers...totally adorable!

noobcook said...

so clever to stuff the tomato rice inside the bell pepper to bake ... extra taste, extra asthetics!~ ^_^

tigerfish said...

I don't think a plant can ever grow profusely in my hands...:(

Definitely a nutritious dish in my opinion.

Divya said...

Recreating restaurant dishes at home... yours looks like it could give a run for the restaurant food!

mikky said...

wow... 1. your rice dish looks so good... 2. i love your basil plant... :)

Andrea said...

Now that's the way I like stuffed peppers! This looks delicious and I bet the Thai basil gave it some extra flavor.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Thanks Rita! Actually, I forgot to mention in my post that This dish is called risotto in other countries. Can you imagine, I forgot that!?

Hi Noobcook! actually, the clever idea is not my idea. I got it from the restaurant who served their tomato rice like so. :)

Hello Tigerfish! I have also brought a lot of grief and mourning to the plant kingdom. :( I just try and try again! And yes, this dish is nutritious!

Thanks Divya! do you know that's usually the reason why Hubby brings me to restaurants -- so that I can make them at home! Isn't he romantic? LOL!!

Thanks Mikky! you know? I bought the seedling at Market, Market? You might want to check them out! :)

Thanks Andrea! Yup, the thai basil gave it a distinct aroma! :)

Nate-n-Annie said...

If you can grow basil, you can grow shiso. Although shiso is in the mint family of plants, it is not a mint.


you know how popular these stuffed peppers (and eggplant, tomatoes, courgettes, etc) are in greek cooking; this dish is in fact a summer staple in my country

[eatingclub] vancouver || js said...

Yummy! Sometimes I underestimate the power of the tomato and I forget how so very delicious tomato rice can be.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Thanks Nate-n-Annie for the tip! I love learning about herbs and I'm very happy to learn they can grow here as well! :)

Hello Mediterranean Kiwi! Yes, we were able to taste this in a popular Greek restaurant here in Manila.

Beachlover said...

Oh!! I love bell pepper taste in any cooking,yum-yum!!.your tomato rice look like nasi tomato in Malays dish!!.your basil plant look healthy and green..too bad this year I didn't plant any basil...Thanks for reminder for the GYO!!

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Hello JS! Tomato is also one of our favorite ingredient. I always have tomato in my fridge all the time. :)

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Hello Lesley! Bell pepper is another of our favorite ingredient! I think we are online at the same time, so I didn't see your comment earlier :) I will do the fun meme you tagged me with... :)

Dora said...

Maybe u can try cooking basil scramble egg...

connie said...

hi.. i am wondering if you still remember the name of the restaurant in Manila u went into... cos i will be there next year.. tq!

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