Recipes: Tomato Rellenos

2 cups water
1 cup long grain white rice, washed
1 teaspoon salt
1 bay leaf
6 large Chef Jeff tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 Chef Jeff jalapeno chilies, seeded, chopped
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup coarsely chopped almonds, toasted
1/4 cup dried currants
Olive oil

Bring water, rice, salt and bay leaf to a boil in heavy medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed about 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Fluff with fork. Cool.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cut 1 inch slice from top of each tomato; reserve tops. Working over bowl to catch juices, remove pulp from tomatoes, leaving shell intact. Strain seeds from juices. Finely chop tomato pulp and reserve with juices. Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and celery and saute until tender, about 5 minutes.

Add garlic, jalapeno and cloves and stir 1 minute. Add reserved tomato pulp and juices. Stir until most of liquid evaporates. Stir in cilantro, almonds, currants and rice. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place tomatoes in individual ramekins. Divide filling among tomatoes. Top each with tomato top. Brush tomatoes with oil. Place ramekins on baking sheet. Bake until tomatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Serve hot.

Difficulty: Easy

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