1. Clean the onions for stuffing. Remove the top and bottom stems, and make one cut from the top to bottom until the center of the onion.
2. Boil in hot water for 10 minutes, covered, until onion leaves are softened. Remove from water and let cool. And then separate the leaves.
3. Mix the ground beef, ground onion, cilantro, two tablespoons tomato paste, rice, and seasonings. Stuff in each onion layer. Squeeze well and place aside.
4. In a pot, sauté diced onion, meat if using, and tomato. And then, place all the stuffed onions over that.
5. Combine one cup hot water plus one tablespoon tomato paste with additional salt and pepper, and pour over the onions. For an added sweet flavor, add three to four prunes.
6. Once the water starts bubbling, reduce heat and simmer for one to one-and-a-half hours.