Saturday, 17 March 2012

You Say Tomato, I Say Tomato: Stuffed Tomatoes

My mother was always a huge fan of the musical.   Growing up, Mom and Dad often took us to the theatre, symphony and ballet (actually, she and I went to the ballet while Dad took Davie to see the Leafs).  Consequently I, too, have a deep love for musicals.  I watch them on television every chance I get, and Carlo and I take the kids to the theatre and symphony whenever our busy lives permit. 

If I had to pick an all-time favourite musical it would have to be Les Miz (I know, it sounds so cliche, but it's true!), and I have been to see it at least 4 times - not to mention watching the 25th anniversary special that keeps appearing on PBS!

So...going back to my childhood - Mom would go around the house singing songs from the classics - the clips that follow are a sampling of Mom's and my favourites...she would sing or hum them as she went about her business...they always brightened her mood and mine. 

Nowadays, I sing them as I putter around our home - the only difference being that I am tone deaf and drive the kids a little nuts when I try to sing.  No worries, 25 years from now they will look back on these days with warm fuzzy memories. 

There's Singing in The Rain:

Cats, The Musical:

Fiddler on the Roof:


They say that music is one of the last things to be lost to an Alzheimer's patient.  I would agree.  Mom still taps her feet and smiles a bright smile when she hears music.  When I visit, I always pull out the old songs she used to sing to me and then to my girls.  Now I sing them to her, and she smiles, occasionally remembering the words to fill in a blank:

Mairzy Doats:

Nobody Loves Me:

I love you a bushel and a peck :

Wow!  Looking for these songs has transported me back to a happy, simple time about 35 years ago, snuggling up with my mother on my parents' bed on a Sunday afternoon, covered by her favourite, tattered blue, purple and red mohair throw (boy was it itchy, but she loved it, and it was a small price to pay for a delicious cuddle with my mama), watching old musicals on TV.  Mom had a few mohair throws, and Sara inherited one, which she keeps on her bed (oy - it itches me just to fold and lay it on top when I change the sheets!!!).

My parents had one just like this!!

I thought I would share these special memories and songs with you because they have become part of who I am - I sing silly ditties that apply to the dish I am preparing.  In this case, I sing "you say tomato and I say tomato - let's call the whole thing off!".  What is the dish, you may ask?  Stuffed tomatoes!  I think I followed a recipe for them at one time, but now I just wing it!  I hope you enjoy making these, and don't forget to sing (ok - maybe just hum) the song while you're doing it!

Until next time,  I wish you a wonderful day filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food!  B'Tayavon & Buon Appetito!

Naomi's Sumptuous Stuffed Tomatoes

  • 4 firm tomatoes - hollowed, reserve pulp! (I prefer plum or hot house)
  • ½ C bread crumbs
  • ¼ C melted margarine
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash
  • 1 tsp dried chives
  • 1 tsp parsley

  • preheat oven to 350 °
  • slice top off each tomato, close to edge
  • gently scoop pulp so tomato is hollow
  • cut around stem of tomato, adding cuttings to pulp
  • finely chop pulp and tops (approx 4 pulses on mini chopper - do not liquefy)
  • combine with remaining ingredients - mixture should be firm enough to hold it's form, not sticky.  If it is sticky, add more bread crumbs until you achieve a workable consistency
  • place tomatoes in muffin pan to hold them upright
  • stuff each tomato with mixture
  • bake for 20 minutes or until filling is golden brown and slightly crispy

1 comment:

  1. Aviva Sherker Lifschitz17 March 2012 at 10:07

    Naomi...what a terrific blog....Although I could have waited until after my morning coffee and breakfast to listen to "Nobody Loves Me". The worms were really yucky...LOL... Love your stuffed tomato recipe and will try it soon. I always look forward to reading your blogs, and sharing your memories.