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Category: Appetizers

BLT cocktail tomatoes with basil

BLT cocktail tomatoes with basil
Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

If your holiday entertaining plans this year center on getting together at home, simple finger foods are the answer. Here are three recipes that are my seasonal favorites; they take simple cocktail foods beyond a wedge of cheese and bowls ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour plus 4 hours chilling | Makes 24 tomatoes
  • 24 cherry tomatoes (about 1-inch in diameter)
  • Salt
  • 16 thin slices bacon, cooked until crisp, blotted, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup finely diced iceberg lettuce
  • 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons minced green onion
  • Small basil leaves, minced basil, for garnish

Step 1Use a sharp knife (serrated is best) to cut a thin top from each tomato, just enough to remove the stem. Use a tomato shark (a small, round spoon-like tool with serrated edge) or the small end of a melon baller to remove and discard the seeds, leaving the shell intact. Lightly sprinkle the inside with salt.

Step 2Place the tomatoes, cut side down, on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Allow them to drain for 4 to 6 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.

Step 3Mix the crumbled bacon, lettuce, mayonnaise, minced basil and green onion in a bowl. (This can be made several hours ahead and refrigerated.)

Step 4To assemble, place the tomatoes, cut side up, on a work surface. (To keep tomatoes stable, use a sharp knife to cut a small slice off the bottom, taking care not to cut through tomato). Fill each tomato with about 1/2 a teaspoon of the bacon mixture until just nicely mounded, using a small espresso or measuring spoon or pastry bag fitted with plain wide tip. Top each with a small basil leaf or minced basil, if using. Serve chilled.

Each tomato:
47 calories; 128 mg sodium; 6 mg cholesterol; 4 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 1 gram carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.31 gram fiber.
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