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Stuffed Tomatoes
12 medium ripe but firm tomatoes 
1 cup olive oil 
3 cups chopped onions 
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and finely chopped 
1 tlbsp. fennel seeds, preferably freshly ground or crushed in a mortar 
1 cup Arborio rice 
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 
1 cup chopped fresh dill 
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint 
1 1/2 tsp. salt, plus more to taste 
1 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper 
1 medium potato, scrubbed, halved crosswise and each half quartered. 
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Cut off the top 1/2 inch of each tomato; set aside the tops. Using a grapefruit spoon, very carefully remove as much pulp as possible fro each tomato, without piercing the skin. Chop the pulp. Measure out 2 1/2 cups; freeze the reast for another use, if desired. In a large skillet, heat 2/3 cup of oil and sauté the onions and fennel bulb over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until soft. Add the fennel seeds and rice and sauté , stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Add 2 cups of tomato pulp, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes more. Stir in the parsley, dill and mint and cook for 2 minutes more. Remove from the heat and add the salt and plenty of pepper. Stuff the tomatoes with the rice mixture, leaving a little room for the stuffing to expand, and cover with the tomato tops. Place the tomatoes in a 13 x 19 inch baking dish and arrange the potato pieces in the gaps between the tomatoes. Pour the remaining 1/2 cup tomato pulp over everything and drizzle the tomatoes with the remaining 1/3 cup oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 1 hour, or until the rice is tender (lift the cover of a tomato and check). Turn off the oven and let stand in the oven for 10 minutes, then let cool the room temperature. Serve 1 or 2 tomatoes and a couple of potato pieces on each plate.

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