• 4 ripe beefsteak tomatoes (or zucchini, red peppers, potatoes)
• 1 pound ground beef
• 1/2 cup bread crumbs
• 1 yellow onion
• 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
• 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 1/3 cup Gruyere
• Sea salt
Preheat the oven to 400° F. Cut the tops off of each tomato and reserve the top. It will become a little hat, or as the French say, le chapeau. Using a spoon, remove the seeds and scoop out the innards being careful not to pierce through the tomato flesh. Sprinkle tomatoes with sea salt and turn them upside down so that the excess water drains out.
With the exception of the olive oil, mix together all the other ingredients by hand until combined. Place the stuffing in each tomato, sprinkle with Gruyere, and cover with the cut tomato top. Drizzle a little extra olive oil on top, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake uncovered for 40 minutes, then allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with a side dish of rice or mushroom risotto. Recipe compliments of Château Rouchereau.
Cotes de Castillon
Merlot is the main grape variety in the hillside vineyards located next to the Saint-Emilion appellation. This is blended with the other great Bordeaux grape variety, Cabernet Franc. Philippe Bardet comes from a long line of wine growers and has been applying an environmentally-friendly approach with just the right technological balance in his vineyards for over fifteen years. Bardet is always among the last to pick his grapes, which are entirely hand-sorted. Automated temperature fermentation control systems make it possible to keep the wines on the skins for a long time while maintaining perfect control of extraction. Depending on the wine’s age, it goes perfectly well with grilled meats, duck and lamb chops, as well as roast chicken and medium-strong cheeses.
“Intense garnet-red color with crimson highlights and a full-bodied, subtle bouquet featuring berry fruit, very ripe black currants and violets. The after taste follows through with aromas of toast and spice.” – Eric Marin, winemaker
Winemaker: Eric Marin
Appellation: Cotes de Castillon Controlee, France
Varietal Blend: 87% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc
Analysis: 13.6% alc/vol
Aging: 75% American Oak, 25% French Oak, aged 14 month