Tag Archives: parmesan

Shrimp and Spinach Risotto

18 Feb
Shrimp and Spinach Risotto

Shrimp and Spinach Risotto

Here’s a creamy and comforting dish that’s a little easier on your waistline with those terms than say, mac and cheese. Although I wouldn’t be one to pass that up either! Risotto is typically made with a short-grained Italian rice called Arborio, which I used here. But if you can’t find that or it’s a bit spendy at your store, you could use a sushi rice or even Calrose. Even a plain ol’ medium grain white rice would work, but it won’t be as creamy.

Leaving the shrimp whole would make this dish quite a bit prettier to present, but let’s face it — who wants to be cutting up their shrimp when you have some hot and creamy spinach risotto waiting to dig into?! Have everything chopped/prepped up front for this. You’ll also want to use some homemade or high-quality chicken broth with this, along with a good dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio. A dish with a short shopping list needs quality for it to shine!

Shrimp and Spinach Risotto

4 cups homemade or good-quality chicken broth
1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut into bite-sized pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste
3 tablespoons butter, divided
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup Arborio rice
1/4 cup dry white wine
A pinch or two of red chile flakes (optional)
6 ounces chopped fresh spinach
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup quality shredded Parmesan

Shrimp and Garlic

Shrimp and Garlic

Heat the chicken broth in a saucepan or microwave until steaming. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper, to taste. Melt one tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat, then add the garlic and shrimp. Cook the shrimp for just a few minutes on each side, until starting to turn opaque. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside, and cover to keep warm.

Risotto Beginnings

Risotto Beginnings

Add another tablespoon of butter to the pan, then add the chopped onion. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add the rice and toss to coat. Cook for a few more minutes until the rice begins to color. Add the white wine and simmer and stir until the wine is completely absorbed by the rice. At this point, because I couldn’t resist, add a pinch or two of red chile flakes if you want.

Adding the Spinach

Adding the Spinach

Using a ladle or measuring cup, add about 1/2 cup of hot chicken broth to the rice. Simmer and stir until the liquid is absorbed. Keep repeating this process, ensuring the liquid is absorbed before the next ladle, until the broth is almost gone, stirring constantly. Headphones with music is fun during this task, stir to the beat! Just before the last ladle of broth is used, stir in a tablespoon of butter, the spinach, shrimp, lemon juice, and then the Parmesan. Stir to completely combine, then add just enough of remaining broth to loosen it up. Stir until the spinach is wilted and the shrimp is cooked through, then serve immediately.

Good Quality Parmesan to Finish

Good Quality Parmesan to Finish

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

 

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Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

17 Nov
Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

We are in that “it’s hard to find a good vegetable at the store” time of year, so when the hubs asked me to pick up some veggies on my last trip, I settled on a spaghetti squash. After making this, I realized I had forgotten how much I like this beautiful squash! But is sure is a pain in the you-know-what to cut open. Most recipes for this showcase the innards in its lovely yellow shell as the serving container, but after my hack job it getting it open it was best left to throw it in a casserole dish.

Aside from trying not to chop your fingers off cutting the squash in half and getting it baked, this is an easy dinner to prepare. Serve with a salad and garlic bread, and dinner is served!

Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

3-4 pound spaghetti squash
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound hot Italian sausage (mild if preferred)
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1 14.5-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon dried parsley (or fresh if you have it)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Carefully cut spaghetti squash in half and remove seeds. Brush with olive oil, then salt and pepper it to taste. Place cut-side down on a baking sheet, and bake for one hour. Let cool until you can handle them, then remove the “spaghetti strands” to a bowl, using a fork. Set aside and reduce oven heat to 350 degrees.

About halfway through the squash cooking time, cook the Italian sausage in a large skillet along with the onions and garlic until the sausage is cooked through. Add the can of crushed tomatoes and stir to combine, then reduce heat to simmer for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile mix together the ricotta, Parmesan and parsley in another bowl.

Once all the players are in place, stir the spaghetti squash into tomato sauce, then pour into a 2-quart oil-sprayed casserole dish. Spread the cheese mixture over top, then the mozzarella. Bake in 350-degree oven for about 20-30 minutes until bubbly and cheese is melted. Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Italian Sausage Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

 

 

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

12 Oct
Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

Hello my long-lost foodie friends! In my six years of food blogging I have never taken a six-week break from blogging, but life kept happening at a lightning-quick pace. My daughter has flown the coop and gone off to college, I’ve taken a couple of much-needed vacations, and I’m about to wind down my food cart business for the winter. I’ve got one last hurrah at a local pumpkin patch event this weekend which I am looking forward to.

While I’ve done plenty of cooking at home between all this, I couldn’t find the time to get it together to photograph and post for you. And speaking of last hurrahs, my newest recipe comes from the zucchini from the last farmer’s market and pretty much the last of our ripe garden tomatoes. We have a late summer produce season here in Central Oregon, so while this may come to you too late for you in your neck of the woods, feel free to save this for next year’s bounty! And of course you can always use any good-looking store-bought produce when you can find it.

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

I have made this sauce three times in the past month, that’s how absolutely delicious and easy it is! Plus it’s versatile, too. It can be completely vegetarian, and truth be told, I wouldn’t miss the meat but I add it in for the hubby. He wants me to make it again with shrimp next time, too, which would be wonderful. The first time I made this I served it over cheese raviolis, and the next two times over garlic and herb pappardelle noodles with chicken. The pappardelle is my favorite! Any kind of pasta would work, but I do love the herb-infused kind with this. You can also use any variety of tomatoes. I used a combination of yellow, purple and red heirloom from our garden.

p.s. to my WordPress friends: I’ll be catching up with you soon! I really do miss reading all your posts. xoxo

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta
(Serves two, easily doubled or tripled)

4 ounces pappardelle noodles, or other quick-cooking pasta
1 small zucchini
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup diced onion or shallots
1 pound fresh tomatoes
Splash of white wine
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried Italian herbs
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Chopped cooked chicken (optional)
Fresh-grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

Set a pot of water on to boil for the pasta. Meanwhile, using a box grater, grate the zucchini onto a sided plate (I used a pie plate.) Spread out and lightly salt and let rest for a few minutes, then pat dry with paper towels.

In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-low, then add the grated zucchini and onions or shallots, stirring occasionally. While the zucchini cooks, grate the tomatoes with the same grater. To grate, core the tomato, then slice a very thin slice off the bottom side. With a flat had, grate the tomato from the cut side until all that’s left is the peel. Discard peel and grate the remaining tomatoes.

Zucchini Tomato Sauce

Zucchini Tomato Sauce

When the zucchini and onions are softened, add a splash of wine to the pan. Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste, and the dried Italian herbs. Simmer the sauce on low. Now add your pasta to the boiling water and cook according to package directions. Just before the noodles are ready, add the tablespoon of butter and the cooked chicken, if using, to the sauce. Stir until butter is melted and chicken is heated through. Drain the pasta and add to a serving dish. Pour the sauce over the noodles, and pass with grated Parmesan. A good thick slice of crusty buttered bread is also a must for sopping up the delicious sauce! Enjoy!

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

Grated Zucchini and Fresh Tomato Pasta

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

 

 

 

Zucchini Pizza Casserole

3 Sep
Zucchini Pizza Casserole

Zucchini Pizza Casserole

While Harvey was flooding Houston and other parts of the south, Oregon has been hell-bent on burning itself down. The air quality is downright nasty and unhealthy right now — and has been — for several weeks. But through that all our local farmer’s market still plugged on, albeit many vendors and shoppers short. And with the lack of shoppers came an abundance of fresh produce my way in exchange for some of my Austin Street Tacos, and equally as much free to take home at the end of the day.

One of my dear blogging friends, Jodi over at The Creative Life in Between, had a perfect recipe posted on her site a couple of weeks ago that made the perfect candidate for some of the produce. While my time is short for blogging while running my cart, I did have a reprieve today to post this fabulous recipe as the concert I was going to sling tacos at tonight was canceled due to the smoke.

I pretty much made this recipe as written, using ground burger and halved the recipe. I’ll just linky you over to her recipe, as she has a handy-dandy printable of it too! I know MANY of you have an abundance of zucchini out there, so please plan on adding this to the list of many things to make with it. It’s quite easy AND delicious!

Click here for the recipe —> Zucchini Pizza Casserole

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

29 Oct
One-Pot Lasagna Soup

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

This is a soup I’ve wanted to make for ages, and FINALLY got inspired to just do it. Soup? Check. Easy? Check. One pot? Check. One hand? Check, dammit. I get my traction device off in less than two weeks, woohooo! But in this seemingly long entrapment from my injury, I have found that one can be quite resourceful while dealing with a disability. Did you know you can break dried lasagna noodles into even pieces one-handed? Simply place the noodle in a glass bowl then push the edge of the noodle hanging out over the lip of the bowl. Snap! Keep moving it up and snapping off the end. See? Easy-peasy! (Newcomers to this site can read about my injury here.)

My recipe here came from several internet-inspired sources. As always, feel free to adapt, as that is pretty much all I’ve been doing lately. Without further ado…

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground hot Italian sausage
3/4 cup chopped sweet onion
1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
6 cups homemade or low-sodium beef broth, divided
1 24-ounce jar good-quality meatless spaghetti sauce
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried crushed oregano
Ground black pepper and salt, to taste
1 bay leaf
10 uncooked dried lasagna noodles, broken into pieces
Fresh Mozzarella slices
Ricotta cheese scoops
Fresh-grated Parmesan cheese

In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, cook the ground beef, sausage, and onion over medium heat until meats are browned and onion is translucent. Add the garlic and stir for a minute more. Drain grease, if necessary.

Add 4 cups of the beef broth and the rest of the ingredients except the cheeses, stirring to separate the noodles. Bring up to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about a half hour until noodles are soft and soup has thickened, about 30 to 45 minutes. Add the remaining two cups of broth, as needed during that time, until soup is desired consistency.

Lasagna Soup

Lasagna Soup

Discard bay leaf and add Mozzarella and Ricotta cheeses to the pot, then let sit without stirring until starting to melt. Ladle scoops of soup and melty cheese into bowls and garnish with fresh-grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with garlic bread and a side salad.  This is good. Really good. We are talking seconds and thirds good. Trust me.

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

 

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

 

Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes

6 Feb
Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes

Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes

Finding creative ways to use leftover deli rotisserie chicken (or even home-roasted for that matter) can sometimes be a challenge. I was pretty stoked when this recipe for chicken croquettes showed up in my WP reader board for a unique and delicious way to use up some leftover cooked chicken. (Thank you Fabulous Fare Sisters for making my day!)

My local grocery just started offering rotisserie chicken breasts pieces for sale instead of the whole chicken. OMG what??? I am not a huge fan of dark meat (although I know it is juicier, but I let hubby always take care of that part of the chicken.) But wow, it was so nice to get some deli-roasted chicken *knowing* all the leftovers would be used up before freezing it and turning it into chicken stock. Yes, that is a nice feeling indeed…

These tasty croquettes were not that hard at all to make, and delivered on taste and were not dry at all. We were all very impressed! The adapted recipe version I am giving you made 5 croquettes, so now I have two in the freezer for an easy future meal for just the hubs and I when daughter isn’t home for dinner. Hooray!

Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes
Adapted from Chicken Parmesan Croquettes at Fabulous Fare Sisters

2 1/2 to 3 cups finely chopped cooked chicken (I used my Ninja food processor)
1 large egg
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs (homemade are good!)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup chicken stock or broth (low sodium or homemade)
Ground pepper and salt or Mrs. Dash seasoning, to taste
1 tablespoon dried oregano (from our garden!)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup marinara sauce, heated through
Shredded Mozzarella cheese for topping the croquettes
Dried or fresh basil, for garnish

Cooked Chicken in Ninja Processor

Cooked Chicken in Ninja Processor

Finely chop/mince the cooked chicken, either with a knife or in a food processor.

In a large mixing bowl, add the first 8 ingredients and combine together using your hands until blended well.

Croquette Ingredients

Croquette Ingredients

Form mixture into patty size of choice — we ended up with 5.  Add oil to skillet over medium heat, then cook on each side until golden, about 3 minutes each side (remember the chicken is already cooked).  Add more breadcrumbs on top (if you have more) when you flip over for extra flavor.

Frying the Croquettes

Frying the Croquettes

Preheat broiler in oven or toaster oven.

Croquettes Ready for Broiling

Croquettes Ready for Broiling

Top each croquette with a couple of tablespoons of heated marinara sauce of choice, then Mozzarella, and broil until cheese is bubbly, about 5 minutes.

Broiled Croquettes

Broiled Croquettes

Garnish with dried or fresh chopped basil. We served this over cooked pasta, but you can serve with any grain or pasta and a salad.

Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes

Pan-Fried Chicken Parmesan Croquettes

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

5 Nov
Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

Ahhhh, risotto. It is such a lovely taste and texture but can be the bane of a cook who doesn’t have the time to bring it up to that incredible creamy  “ahhhh” in your mouth sensation. But if you are short on time, a pressure cooker will take all that “non-time” away to give you a perfectly creamy risotto, full of flavor. Add some Cajun-spiced shrimp on top, and tah-dah! Dinner served. In less than a half-hour. Job accomplished.

Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp
Risotto recipe adapted from Perfect Risotto at bonafidefarmfood.com

For the Risotto:

1/2 cup finely diced yellow onion
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup Arborio or California Pearl rice
4 to 5 cups shrimp stock, recipe here —> Homemade Shrimp Stock
1/2 cup fresh-grated Parmesan cheese, from a block

Diced Onions

Diced Onions ~ HEY! Who doesn’t eat microwaved popcorn while prepping dinner, huh???

For the Cajun-Spiced Shrimp:

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 pound large shrimp, shelled and deveined
Cajun-spiced seasoning, to taste
Fresh-grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Chopped green onion ends, for garnish
Lemon wedges, for garnish

Get all your ingredients prepped. This doesn’t take long at all!

Prepping the Ingredients

Prepping the Ingredients

Heat your pressure cooker (at minimum 3-quart size) over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter until hot, then add the chopped onions. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes.

Wine Pouring Shot

Wine Pouring Shot ~ Something went awry with my camera settings for this shot so you get the “Instagram” look!

Add the dry white wine and bring to a boil. Boil for a few minutes more then add the rice  and the shrimp stock.

Risotto Ready to Pressure Cook

Risotto Ready to Pressure Cook

Put on the lid to your pressure cooker and lock into place, then bring up the pressure to high according to manufacturer’s directions. (I have a manual one, that means when the pressure gauge starts rocking. Results may vary by what you have.)

My Pressure Cooker

My Pressure Cooker

Once the gauge is rockin’ (or up to pressure for you high-tech electronic owners), set the timer for 7 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the shrimp. Add a tablespoon of butter to a hot skillet and heat until foamy. Add the garlic, then add the shrimp in one layer. Season with Cajun-seasoning of choice. Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Don’t overcook! Remove shrimp from skillet and set aside until risotto is done.

Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

At the end of the 7 minute-timer, remove pressure cooker from heat and run the pot under cold water to release the pressure immediately. Don’t remove the lid until all pressure is released.

Stir in the rest of the butter and the half cup of Parmesan cheese.

Perfect Risotto

Perfect Risotto

Serve Risotto in bowls , topped with the Cajun-Spiced Shrimp, and garnish with fresh-grated Parmesan cheese, green onions, and lemon wedges.

Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

Shrimp Risotto with Cajun-Spiced Shrimp

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Creamy Squash, Spinach, and Chicken Polenta Casserole

17 Apr
Creamy Squash Spinach and Chicken Polenta Casserole

Creamy Squash Spinach and Chicken Polenta Casserole

Strange ingredients? Please hear me out. This is NOT weird at all and received multiple thumbs up from the family. Gosh, even the leftovers were awesome. There is something about the down-home creamy corn base from the polenta and slightly sweet taste from the squashes and then the spinach and chicken that just made this an incredibly surprising meal! My eyes gone wide, you know what I mean? WOW! (This actually doesn’t even need the chicken and could be vegetarian, but the meat was already defrosted.)

I had the defrosted chicken breast and a fresh bag of spinach, and set my sights on something new for the combination. I have made my Balsamic Chicken and Spinach more times than I can count the past few years. Somehow I came across some vegetarian polenta and spinach casserole recipes, and tasked myself with coming up with a recipe my family would actually eat.

I found a great recipe with fresh spinach and mushrooms but it used pre-made polenta cakes. Another recipe I found had a creamy homemade polenta base with zucchini, squash and tomatoes. Well, the daughter doesn’t “do” mushrooms, I only had fresh spinach and dried polenta grain on hand, so decided to mix up the two recipes and came up with my own original. You will NOT be disappointed. (Aside note: I was following the vegetarian version recipes and totally spaced on browning the chicken until assembly. Yikes! So please, follow my instructions below instead of doing what I did. Or, omit chicken altogether. It all worked out, we only ate 10 minutes later than the original plan.)

Creamy Squash, Spinach, and Chicken Polenta Casserole

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken (breasts or thighs)
Ground black pepper, and salt or Mrs. Dash, to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups water
2 cups milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup dried polenta (course cornmeal)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 to 3/4 cup chopped onion
1 small zucchini, sliced and quartered (about 1 cup)
1 small yellow squash, sliced and quartered (about 1 cup)
1 15-ounce can of diced tomatoes with oregano, garlic and basil (if yours are plain diced, add dried or fresh herbs to taste)
1 8 to 10-ounce bag fresh spinach
Ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup shredded fresh Mozarrella cheese
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and season to taste with ground black pepper and salt or Mrs. Dash. Heat a skillet with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat and brown the chicken about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring often. Set aside.

Cooking the Creamy Polenta

Cooking the Creamy Polenta

Heat 1 1/2 cups of water in a medium sauce pot to boil. Stir together the milk and polenta to make a slurry, then add to the boiling water. Bring up to a simmer then reduce the heat and simmer for about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened. (If you want you could brown the chicken now in this step. I just didn’t want you to forget!)

Creamy Polenta Poured into Pan

Creamy Polenta Poured into Pan

When the polenta is done, pour it into an oil-sprayed 13 x 9 or so sized casserole dish and set aside.

Chopped Onion, Zucchini, and Squash

Chopped Onion, Zucchini, and Squash

Meanwhile, add the 2 tablespoons olive oil to a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, zucchini, and squash and sauté until the onions are softened.

Vegetable Mixture Simmering

Vegetable Mixture Simmering

Add the tomatoes (and spices if tomatoes aren’t pre-seasoned). Bring up to a simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the browned chicken and mix to combine. Now, by handfuls, tear up the spinach and add to the mixture and stir in until all is added and wilted.

Spinach Wilting into Vegetables

Spinach Wilting into Vegetables ~ WAIT ~ You don’t see that forgotten chicken in the background you had to cook first, right??

Meanwhile (again), preheat the oven to 350 degrees. After the vegetable mixture is done, spread it evenly on top of the polenta in the casserole dish. Top with a combination of shredded Mozarella and Parmesan cheeses.

Creamy Squash Spinach and Chicken Polenta Casserole Ready to Bake

Creamy Squash, Spinach, and Chicken Polenta Casserole Ready to Bake

Bake for about 25 minutes until it is heated through and bubbly and the cheese has melted. Turn the heat up to broil and broil for 5 minutes. Take out of oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve on plates or in bowls. Nothing else is needed, as this is an entire meal! If this weren’t so fugly coming out of the casserole dish, I’d call it guest-worthy (taste-wise)!

p.s. (My sister arrived today from Texas for 10 days, so I might not get a post out for awhile. Enjoy browsing my archives if you want if you are a newcomer!)

Casserole Half-Eaten

Casserole Half-Eaten~ YEP! Three of us pretty much wiped out half of a lasagna pan of this in one sitting!

 

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

23 Mar

UPDATE! I so apologize to my readers, but I am so thankful for my readers who point out a mistake in my recipe and that they actually take the time to make my recipes! I am humbled!

However, I forgot to include in the instructions to mix the Mozzarella and Parmesan with the spinach and other ingredients. That has now been fixed, both in this post and in the PDF. I apologize for any inconvenience (or lack of taste) this has caused for you. As always, thank you so much for sticking with me on this adventure! XOXO

anotherfoodieblogger

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

If you have some yummy spaghetti sauce on hand and want to make something different than plain ol’ spaghetti, this is a winning recipe! It’s not overly difficult to make (aside from stuffing those pesky shells) and makes a really nice meal that has all your veggies in it!

I pretty much used my recipe for my Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups, but just changed some of the cheese amounts. I feel pretty proud of this recipe, as all the online versions I found for it made anywhere from 24 to 30 shells — way more than I wanted! I went with my gut feeling, and figured 16 shells would do the trick with the amount of stuffing I use for my roll-ups. I was SPOT ON! Woo hoo! I served this with green salad and baked garlic bread. We ate half one…

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Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

21 Mar
Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

If you have some yummy spaghetti sauce on hand and want to make something different than plain ol’ spaghetti, this is a winning recipe! It’s not overly difficult to make (aside from stuffing those pesky shells) and makes a really nice meal that has all your veggies in it!

I pretty much used my recipe for my Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups, but just changed some of the cheese amounts. I feel pretty proud of this recipe, as all the online versions I found for it made anywhere from 24 to 30 shells — way more than I wanted! I went with my gut feeling, and figured 16 shells would do the trick with the amount of stuffing I use for my roll-ups. I was SPOT ON! Woo hoo! I served this with green salad and baked garlic bread. We ate half one night, then finished the other half the next, but you can freeze the leftovers if you want.

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

16 uncooked Jumbo shell pasta
3 cups Paul’s Spicy Spaghetti Sauce, or other prepared sauce
1 15-ounce container Ricotta cheese
3/4 cup shredded Mozzarella (I used a block of low-fat and shredded it with a grater)
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan
2 teaspoons minced garlic
10-ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 large egg, beaten
Ground black pepper, to taste
Salt or Mrs. Dash, to taste
Pinch of ground nutmeg
Additional shredded Mozzarella, for topping

Preheat oven to 400°F. Cook the noodles to al dente according to package directions. While the noodles are cooking, combine the Ricotta, Mozzarella, Parmesan, garlic, spinach, egg, pepper, salt or Mrs. Dash, and a pinch of nutmeg in a medium bowl.

Stuffed Pasta Ingredients Ready to Mix

Stuffed Pasta Ingredients Ready to Mix

When the noodles are done, drain the noodles, let cool a bit, then lay them on parchment or wax paper in a single layer.

Cooked Pasta Shells

Cooked Pasta Shells

Spread 1 cup of spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a 2-quart casserole dish. Stuff 1/4 cup or so of the cheese and spinach mixture into each pasta shell and place into the dish.

Stuffed Shells Wanting Sauce and Cheese

Stuffed Shells Wanting Sauce and Cheese

Pour 2 cups of spaghetti sauce over the stuffed shells. Grate additional mozzarella cheese over the top of the shells, then cover the pan with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and turn on the broiler. Broil for about 5 to 10 minutes until cheese is bubbly.

Stuffed Shells Ready to Cook

Stuffed Shells Ready to Cook

Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with a green side salad and garlic bread. You can freeze the remaining shells in Ziploc bags for a quick and easy future meal. My family loved this so much we ate the rest of it up the next day!

p.s. (Please let me indulge you with photos of my daughter’s rose she got at her dance team’s end-of-year potluck celebration! That was a long journey to get through dance season with the football and basketball schedules!)

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese2

Italian Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach and Cheese

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

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