In ancient China, Black Rice was known as “Emperor’s Rice”, and it was reserved exclusively for Chinese Royalty. Loaded with antioxidants, vitamin E and fiber, Black Rice is as versatile as it is delicious. Its slightly sweet, slightly nutty taste, combined with its distinctive dark color, makes it appealing to the eyes and the taste buds. One serving has the same amount of antioxidants as a single serving of cultivated blueberries – without all the sugar. Simple, healthy, delicious – and easy to prepare.
Basil: Remarkable for its fresh, pungent flavor unlike that of another herb, basil is widely used in Mediterranean salads, especially Italian recipes. Basil leaves are tender and delicate and should be gently torn or snipped with scissors, rather than chopped with a knife.
Stuffed Tomatoes with Black Rice & Basil
- 8 medium-size fresh tomatoes
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and shredded
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cups cooked black rice (1 cup rice + 2 cup water)
- 2 Tbsp. fresh basil leaves, chopped
Wash tomatoes, cut a slice from stem end of each, and scoop out the inside, leaving shells intact. Sprinkle inside of tomato cups with salt and invert on a plate to drain. (Save pulp and juice to use later.)
Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and carrot and sauté until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Mix with the cooked black rice, basil, salt, and pepper.
Preheat an oven to 350F. Spoon the rice mixture into tomato cups, cover with tops. Bake, uncovered, about 30 minutes. Serve hot.
To cook black rice, rinse the rice under cold water before cooking. Some color will bleed upon rinsing. This is normal. Cover and bring to a boil, then lower heat to simmer until all water is absorbed. Cooking time is roughly 20-30 minutes.