Gameday Grub: Prepare thy tomatoes

By
Updated: December 1, 2012
It's two recipes for the price of one, as Chef Aaron Bowers marries rotini salad with roasted tomatoes.

It’s two recipes for the price of one, as Chef Aaron Bowers marries rotini salad with roasted tomatoes.

Welcome back to the kitchen, kids! Today we are featuring sausage and peppers rotini salad, brought to us by site contributor and regular commentator . We will be dressing up this wonderful salad with roasted stuffed tomatoes. This colorful and sauceless salad is delightful eaten hot or cold, but for this application we will be serving it hot.

Enough of the chitchat. Let’s get cooking!

What you need

Rotini salad

  • 1 lb box rotini (or tri-colored rotini)
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 lb bulk Italian sausage (hot, mild, or garlic)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons grated Pecorino or Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup black olives

 Stuffed tomatoes

  • 1 cup dried morel mushrooms
  • 1 cup dried chanterelle mushrooms
  • 1 cup dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3 cups white wine
  • 6 medium tomatoes, cored, seeded plus 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup finely diced onion
  • 1 1/4 cup panko crumbs (Japanese)
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 1/2 ounces goat cheese, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves

To the Kitchen!

In a large kettle, bring water to a boil.

Meanwhile, cut off the top of the tomato approximately an inch from the top and spoon out the seeds with a spoon. Put mushrooms, water, and wine into a container and soak until mushrooms are rehydrated. Remove mushrooms and squeeze out excess liquid. Reserve the liquid. Roughly chop mushrooms. Sprinkle the cored and seeded tomatoes with salt and place upside down to drain for about 15 minutes.

As the tomatoes drain, core peppers and slice into 1/2-inch square pieces.

In a skillet, brown the sausage. In a separate skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté garlic, peppers, and olives. Season with 1/4 teaspoon sea salt.

In a saute pan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil; add shallots, garlic, and onion. Cook until translucent. Add mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of reserved mushroom liquid to pan and cook for another 4 or 5 minutes, or until most of liquid is absorbed. Add panko and chopped tomato; stir to combine. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper and remove from heat.

Boil rotini until tender. Drain and toss with sausage, peppers and garlic. Sprinkle with the pecorino cheese.

Heat broiler. Mix room temperature goat cheese, parsley, and reserve. Stuff each tomato with mushroom stuffing and top with thin layer of goat cheese mixture. Place tomatoes on a baking sheet and put under broiler for 2 to 3 minutes until cheese is slightly melted and golden.

Chef’s note

To serve in a classy manner, place salad in the center of the plate, press down in center with spoon to create a well, and place place tomato in center of the well.

By the way, if you wish to contribute recipe ideas to future installments, feel free to e-mail at the email address listed below.

About the author(s)

Born and raised in Ashland, Wisconsin, where he still lives today after 29 years, Chef Aaron Bowers serves as the culinary correspondent for the Water Cooler Sports Network. Surrounded by Green Bay Packers fans his whole life, he by default became a Packers fan — just in time, too, as his first football memory was the game in which quarterback Don Majkowski injured his ankle and was replaced by a young backup named Brett Favre. When not watching football, he enjoys cooking, having made his living in the food industry for about six years, before moving on to a more comfortable day job. He also enjoys other sports such as mixed martial arts and major league baseball. He is the brains behind our weekly Gameday Grub feature and can be reached with questions, comments or suggestions for future recipes at .

223 comments
Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

I'm sitting at school in a study room with 2 TVs and a system that allows me to watch a different channel on both. WINNING. I'll get to watch both noon games. 

zombienunya
zombienunya

whats up with the points after your name

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

Great. McFadden is unlikely to play. My playoff hopes rest on Deangelo Williams. 

zombienunya
zombienunya

back later. gonna go fix something to eat. maybe ill make an omlet or some biscuits with sausage gravy

zombienunya
zombienunya

damn. still 2 hours til kickoff. i think the clock is slow

zombienunya
zombienunya

sometimes i miss the old rivalries the bucs had with the nfc central. now the north

zombienunya
zombienunya

i think they should have pushed the game later in the day or tommorrow for the chiefs. give them a little more time

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

do i start Tannehill vs NE or Ponder vs GB?

zombienunya
zombienunya

GO BUCS!!!!!!!!!!!!! whip that donkey ass

Maized and Confused
Maized and Confused

  It's based on a complex equation to figure out how awesome everyone is.

Maized and Confused
Maized and Confused

  What? Playing Who Dat Nation and the Dirty Birds isn't fulfilling? 

Maized and Confused
Maized and Confused

  No time would have been enough time.

 

It's like a band aid, just rip it off.

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

  the Chiefs chose to play the game as scheduled. the NFL gave them the choice and gave them until 9:00 PM yesterday, to decide if they played or not. but the coaches and players all decided to play 

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

  Ponder. I think they'll be down and will have to keep throwing. 

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

  that is going to be a stiff test with your pass defense, but good luck non the less 

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

  In my defense, I only have 2 finals this semester on the 11th and the 13th. So there. I've got plenty of time.

Maized and Confused
Maized and Confused

  

(Actually, it's just the number of likes you have received from other people)

zombienunya
zombienunya

 

 just not the same as the old rivalries

zombienunya
zombienunya

 

 i know. but they still could have moved it til later

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

  see i'm conflicted, cause i think the first half Ponder may only throw 10 passes, where as Tannehill will be gunning from the get go. but the Packers injured defense may be worse than NE's 

zombienunya
zombienunya

 

 thanbks. i think we will win. their run d aint that good

Maized and Confused
Maized and Confused

  

I learned everything I need to know about law ethics from SDL.

 

Guppy.

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

  I agree, but both classes fill a graduation requirement (ethics and procedure) so I need to pass. 

zombienunya
zombienunya

 

 then the ones in the thousands must have been here awhile

zombienunya
zombienunya

   

 some of the comments he made were funny as hell

Houndog
Houndog

    It was hard NOT to follow them in the John McKay years, the loud-mouth was always in the news! The original version of the "Buddy Ryan" type coach!

Houndog
Houndog

    Thanks MaC, the day will come that you'll be happy to have one too!

zombienunya
zombienunya

   

 i understand. not your team so you dont follow them unless they play your team

Houndog
Houndog

    I remember the Feragamo, DeBerg, Young, and Doug Williams years, and LeRoy and Dewey Selmon. I know Ron Wolf was the best GM they ever had. But the finer points I don't know about, cuz I never cared!

zombienunya
zombienunya

   

 heres another little known fact. the bucs were awarded to the city of tampa. not to an owner

Houndog
Houndog

    No disrespect intended, I just thought your name suggested you were younger! And no, I didn't know that, but I know a lot about the first GM to take them anywhere!

zombienunya
zombienunya

   

 i was 17 when the bucs came into the league. their first year they played in the afc central. bet you didnt know that

Houndog
Houndog

    You got a hell of a memory of your early childhood, how can you remember that stuff?

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

  i think i'm going to,i just think he is going to be passing more throughout the whole game whereas Ponder won't be throwing much until they have to 

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

  Although Ponder is 18, 2, 13, 6 in his last 4. His season high is 24. 

Pat Fenis, Esq.
Pat Fenis, Esq.

  I was torn too. Tannehill is just so damn inconsistent. In his last 4 games, he has 15, 2, 5, and 15 fantasy points. His season high is 19. At least in ESPN scoring.

zombienunya
zombienunya

     

 i could deal with the bucs blowing them out

Houndog
Houndog

      Or a blowout.

zombienunya
zombienunya

     

 should be one of those "edge of your seat" games

Houndog
Houndog

      Yep, sure will!

Houndog
Houndog

      Go with Denver, nuff said!

Houndog
Houndog

    Where's the game?