Friday, May 1, 2009

Spinach Stuffed Pasta Shells

Sometimes I get inspired by what's on sale. A pound ricotta container was on sale for $2.99 last week so I didn't think I could pass it up. I thought of making an Italian ricotta cake but then figured I would go for something easy and healthy: spinach stuffed pasta shells.

Spinach Stuffed Pasta Shells - 3 Servings
The filling is the same spinach mixture that I used for the Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rolls. I kept the recipe simple with just a tomato sauce, spinach filling and topped with mozzarella. This would taste quite good with a béchamel sauce but I was trying to keep it healthy!

* oil
* ½ small onion, small diced
* 1 package spinach, cooked, drained and chopped
* salt and pepper, to taste
* ½ lb of light ricotta

Heat up a bit of oil.
Cook onion until softened.
Add the spinach and mix.
Season the mixture.

I always find it amazing how much spinach shrinks.

* tomato sauce (for a homemade recipe)
* spinach mixture (recipe above)
* 12 large pasta shells, cooked (4 per serving)
* mozzarella, grated

Spoon tomato sauce at the bottom of a baking dish.
Stuff the shells with the spinach mixture.
Place stuffed pasta shells on top of the tomato sauce.
Spoon more tomato sauce on top of the shells.
Sprinkle with mozzarella.
Bake at 350F for about 20 minutes, until the shells are heated through and the cheese melted.

Pasta shells and tomato sauce at the bottom of a baking dish. I added some half-and-half to the tomato sauce, just because I had some leftover from Easter weekend.

Stuffed pasta shells.

The pasta after baking. My mozzarella isn't shredded because I now buy mozzarella sliced. I find I am not able to finish a block of cheese so buying a small amount at the deli ensures no waste!

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