Pella Chronicle


October 11, 2012

Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Shells with Marinara Sauce

Pella — Marinara Sauce:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 yellow onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes

2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans tomato suace

2 beef bouillon cubes

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon coarse salt

freshly ground black pepper


1 (12-ounce) box jumbo pasta shells, cooked and drained

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound fresh spinach

1/4 cup water

1 1/4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

3 cups ricotta cheese

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon white pepper

1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

1. To prepare marinara sauce, heat olive oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and saute until translucent. Add garlic and saute 1 minute. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, bouillon cubes, basil, oregano, parsley and sugar. Stir well. Simmer over low heat 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper. Makes about 6 cups.

2. Preheat oven to 350F.

3. Toss cooked pasta with olive oil and set aside.

4. Combine spinach with water in a large saucepan over medium heat. Simmer, covered, until spinach is wilted, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain well and squeeze spinach to remove excess moisture. Finely chop spinach.

5. Combine mozzarella, ricotta, eggs, garlic, spinach, 1/2 cup Parmesan, nutmeg, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Stir to blend. Generously stuff pasta shells with cheese mixture. Place shells in 2 (13 X 9-inch) baking dishes and cover with marinara sauce. Sprinkle evenly with remaining Parmesan cheese and parsley.

6. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until cheese is melted and sauce is hot and bubbly. Let cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 10.




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