Stuffed Shells

Florentine Beef and Cheese Stuffed Shells

The two-pan plan... Although this recipe may seem a bit fussy, it makes two pans, so you can bake one for the kids right away and refrigerate the other to bake for your Date Night Dinner while they watch their favourite Harry Potter movie. Serve theirs with a glass of milk and some veggies and dip and yours with a side-salad of baby greens dressed with balsamic vinaigrette (using their veggie and dip leftovers to add to your salad of course!) And don’t forget your glass of ‘red’ – you deserve it. Cheers!

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Stuffed Shells

Yields16 Servings

 1 box (340 g) jumbo pasta shells (approx. 44 shells)
 1lb (500 g) Lean or Extra Lean Ground Beef Sirloin - Why choose "Sirloin" lean ground beef?
 1 medium onion, finely chopped
 2 to 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
 1 tsp (5 mL) dried Italian herb seasoning
 1 pkg (454 g) light ricotta cheese
 1 pkg (300 g) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
 1/2 tsp (2 mL) pepper
 4 cups (1 L) fat and sodium-reduced pasta sauce
 1/4 cup (50 mL) grated light Parmesan-style cheese

1

Cook pasta shells according to package directions. Drain and rinse; set aside. (Don’t worry if some shells tear – you won’t need them all).

2

Meanwhile, cook beef, onion, garlic and Italian seasoning in large, deep frying pan over medium heat for 10 minutes, or until beef is thoroughly cooked and any liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat. Stir in ricotta, spinach, 1 cup (250 mL) of the mozzarella and pepper; combine well. Spoon 2 tbsp (30 mL) into each of about 32 shells.

3

Spread 1-1/3 cups (325 mL) pasta sauce into each of 13 x 9-inch (3L) baking dish and 9-inch (23 cm) glass pie plate. Place 20 filled shells in baking dish, and 10 to 12 in pie plate. Top shells in baking dish with remaining pasta sauce (none needed for pie plate). Sprinkle parmesan and remaining mozzarella over shells in both pans. (Can be covered and refrigerated or frozen). Cover loosely with foil and bake in 350°F (180°C) oven for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5 minutes.

4

Makes 16 servings (2 shells per person).

Ingredients

 1 box (340 g) jumbo pasta shells (approx. 44 shells)
 1lb (500 g) Lean or Extra Lean Ground Beef Sirloin - Why choose "Sirloin" lean ground beef?
 1 medium onion, finely chopped
 2 to 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
 1 tsp (5 mL) dried Italian herb seasoning
 1 pkg (454 g) light ricotta cheese
 1 pkg (300 g) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
 1/2 tsp (2 mL) pepper
 4 cups (1 L) fat and sodium-reduced pasta sauce
 1/4 cup (50 mL) grated light Parmesan-style cheese

Directions

1

Cook pasta shells according to package directions. Drain and rinse; set aside. (Don’t worry if some shells tear – you won’t need them all).

2

Meanwhile, cook beef, onion, garlic and Italian seasoning in large, deep frying pan over medium heat for 10 minutes, or until beef is thoroughly cooked and any liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat. Stir in ricotta, spinach, 1 cup (250 mL) of the mozzarella and pepper; combine well. Spoon 2 tbsp (30 mL) into each of about 32 shells.

3

Spread 1-1/3 cups (325 mL) pasta sauce into each of 13 x 9-inch (3L) baking dish and 9-inch (23 cm) glass pie plate. Place 20 filled shells in baking dish, and 10 to 12 in pie plate. Top shells in baking dish with remaining pasta sauce (none needed for pie plate). Sprinkle parmesan and remaining mozzarella over shells in both pans. (Can be covered and refrigerated or frozen). Cover loosely with foil and bake in 350°F (180°C) oven for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5 minutes.

4

Makes 16 servings (2 shells per person).

Florentine Beef and Cheese Stuffed Shells
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