Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Stuffed Shells

This is one of Alex’s favorite dishes.  It takes a little work but freezes well, so I like to make a double batch and freeze a batch for later.
Stuffed Shells
5   cups of good quality pasta sauce
1   (30 oz) container part-skim ricotta cheese
1   (8 oz) bag Italian 5 cheese blend of finely shredded cheese
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
2   eggs, lightly beaten
1   (8 oz) box frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed out
3   tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1   (12 oz) box of jumbo shells


1.  In a large 10” by 15” baking pan (or a 9”x12” & an 8” square baking pans) spread about
      1 ½ -2 cups of the sauce on the bottom of the pan(s).

2.  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and put a large pot of salted water on to boil.

3.  In a large bowl add ricotta cheese thru nutmeg and blend with a hand mixer, until
     all ingredients are incorporated.

4. When water comes to a boil, add pasta and cook according to package directions
     being careful not to overcook the pasta.

5. Drain pasta and cool until you can handle it without getting burnt*.  Hold the shell in
    one hand and use a spoon to fill each shell with the cheese mixture.  Place the shells
    in the pre-pared pan(s). 

6. Use the remaining sauce to drizzle over the pasta.  (you can sprinkle with
    additional parmesan cheese or shredded cheese if you have some) Cover
    with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes, uncover and bake an additional
    15 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

7. Let cool for 10-15 minutes and serve with salad and good quality crusty bread.

*Do not allow pasta to cool to much, it needs to be warm or the shells will break when
   you try to fill them.

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