Tomatoes stuffed with capers & tuna | Punjeni paradajz s kaparima i tunom

I love this recipe because it’s so easy to make. I mean, it would be so much harder if you needed tuna steaks etc, but using tinned tuna is super fast and of all the processes I think the hardest part (atleast for me) was cleaning out the tomatoes.

If you’ve never heard of them, stuffed baked tomatoes are a Dalmatian art and there are loads of variations on what you can use as your filling. (Dalmatians would probably call their tomatoes pome, but I have used the word paradajz because that’s the Croatian-proper term rather than dialect) In addition to the filling I chose, you could also add black/green olives, or there are other stuffing variations like cheese, meat etc. I love this version so that’s what I’m sticking to, this filling is so delicious, I dare you not to take a few mouthfuls of the filling (pre-stuffing.)



  • Six (6) large ripened tomatoes (if possible when you’re buying make sure that they can stand up on their own – this makes it easier for baking and presentation)
  • Two cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 50mls extra-virgin olive oil
  • One (1) brown onion, chopped
  • Two (2) smalls tins of tuna (180 grams altogether)
  • 50 grams of bottled capers
  • Two (2) tablespoons Italian parsley, finely chopped
  • One (1) tablespoon of basil, finely chopped
  • sea salt (to taste)
  • pepper (to taste)
  1. Wash your tomatoes. Cut the tops off in a neat circle being sure to keep the green stalk on and reserve. Using the smallest teaspoon you can find and scoop out the seeds/interior. Sprinkle a pinch of salt into each tomato and turn them upside down for about 20 minutes so that all the juices drip out.
  2. In a saucepan, sauté the garlic in oil for 15 seconds (don’t let the garlic go brown). Add the onion and sauté on low until soft, add the tuna and capers and sauté for 5 minutes being sure to break up all the chunks of tuna. Season with pepper. (I salted here as well as the inside of the tomatoes and in the end I had over-salted. Hence I recommend just adding pepper here and each to their own with the salt when the tomatoes are served)
  3. Add the parsley and basil, stir through and leave to cool. (That smell!! Heaven!!)
  4. Preheat your oven to 180°C.
  5. When the tuna mix is cool, fill your tomatoes with a teaspoon and place them in a baking tray. Put all the tops back on and bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Serve them hot or cold.

Ok, I totally love this recipe because it’s easy to prepare and makes a great starter or side. It’s also a hearty meal (more than one) and when served with a side salad it actually makes a filling lunch or light dinner.

Serve it  with a crisp glass of white and I’m sure you’ll hear Dalmatia calling.

A peek inside – the stuffing is a taste sensation

Anyway, let me know if you tried it, how it went? Was it boom or bust?

Zivjeli! (Cheers and let’s live!)


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