Pomodori ripieni con pangrattato, capperi e acciughe – roasted tomatoes stuffed with breadcrumbs, capers and anchovies












Another classic way for stuffing tomatoes. I only marginally adapted this recipes from one by Ada Boni’s Il Talismano della Felicità (1929) Again, as in the previous post, a long and  slow roast is recommended.
Now that is super hot even in London, I tend to cook this sort of dishes early morning, to be then eaten in the evening. The nutmeg is not a personal touch, but, surprisingly, recommended in the original recipe.

For 12 medium-small tomatoes (they were 2 kg), I used

A tin of anchovy fillets in oil (approx 30 g drained , but I kept the oil)
a small handful of chopped parsley
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
6-8 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs, from a white loaf
1 large onion, finely chopped
24 thick slices of potatoes
a couple of tablespoons of dry, fine, unflavoured, breadcrumbs (Italian pangrattato)

Film a roomy frying pan with oil, add the oil from the tin of anchovies and fry the onion in it, until golden, on a medium-low flame.
Add the anchovy fillets, let them melt and add and the breadcrumbs.
Cook this mix for about ten minutes. Add the chopped parsley, stir it around for few seconds and remove the pan from the heat.

Check for salt, pepper and grate a little nutmeg all over. .If the mix looks too try, add some oil. You  could add some soaked and squeezed dried currants or sultanas, if you  want (this is my addition).

Let it cool down. Meanwhile, slice off the tops of the tomatoes and scoop out as much pulp as possible and the seeds, leaving an empty shell that is about 2 cm thick. These leftovers (tops, pulp and seeds)  are not used for this dish – you can use them in a tomato sauce, for instance.

Sprinkle each tomato halve with sale, pepper and a pinch of sugar.
Lightly wet a large oven dish, drizzle some oil and place the tomato slices in it, salting them. Place each halve on each slice. Fill the tomatoes with the stuffing, sprinkle them with the dry breadcrumbs. Drizzle them with extra oil I have also added some sliced potatoes to the dish, around the tomatoes.

Cook in a preheated 170 C oven for about just short of two hours or until the tomatoes are still holding their shape but completely soft.
Eat at room temperature.
Please not the absence of garlic.


4 thoughts on “Pomodori ripieni con pangrattato, capperi e acciughe – roasted tomatoes stuffed with breadcrumbs, capers and anchovies

  1. Absence of garlic duly noted and appreciated!!! A couple of questions, if you don’t mind. (I have Il Talismano but asking you is more fun!) What kind of potato – yours look like waxy ones. True? And when you say to put the tomato shells on the tomato slices, are the tops of the tomato you slice off the slices on the bottoms now? Plan to make this with our homemade capers. DSA


    1. !! of course… as I know, I do think most Italian_american_british recipes get it totally wrong, overkilling a dish with garlic.
      I used vaxy potatoes, and their main function is to provide a pedestal for the tomatoes, that might stick more easily…. The tops: I did not use the tops at all, they are still in the fridge BUT what u suggest is more clever actually: I would add them to the potatoes, to provide some moisture & umami … what u think?


      1. I think the chopped tops would good, although worried they would make the potatoes soggy. But there is only one good way to find out! Try it! Happy weekend to you both!


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