Baked Pasta Shells Stuffed with Spinach, Squash, Ricotta & Basil, with Homemade Garlic Tomato Sauce
As I mentioned in my last post, my friends Patrice and Brittnee persuaded me to do a dinner/manicure trade this week.
Pasta Shells (for 3-4 people who are gluttons)
15 large Pasta Shells
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Bring water to boil in a pot with olive oil and a couple pinches of salt. Add pasta and boil until al dente. Set aside a cup of the pasta water and drain the pasta. Set pasta aside.
Garlic Tomato Sauce
6 Roma Tomatoes, stem end/core removed
4 cloves Garlic, chopped
1 yellow Onion, Chopped
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
3/4 cup Red Wine
1 cup Water from boiled pasta
Salt to taste
Bring water to boil in a large pot. Add tomatoes and cook until the skins split. Run under cold water until cook enough to handle. Remove skins (should come off easily). Add tomatoes to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add olive oil to a saute pan and saute onions and garlic until soft. Add tomatoes, pasta water and begin to simmer. As the sauce begins to reduce, add wine and continue to cook down. Season with salt. Remove from heat once you have a nice consistency.
Spinach, Squash, Ricotta & Basil Filling
2 cups Spinach, stems removed, ripped into manageable pieces
1/2 cup Yellow Squash, chopped small
1/2 cup Green Squash, chopped small
2 cups Ricotta
Handful of Fresh Basil, stems removed, chopped
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to Taste
In a saute pan, lightly saute squash & zucchini for a couple of minutes. In a bowl mix ricotta, squash, spinach and basil. Salt and pepper to taste.
2/3 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a square baking dish, layer the bottom with half of the tomato sauce. Spoon ricotta mixture into each shell and add to the pan, forming one layer. Top with remaining tomato sauce, covering the shells. Spread parmesan cheese on top. Cover with foil and bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 3-5 minutes or until cheese on top has melted. Everything should be hot and bubbly. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly before serving.
It’s been a strange week, topped off with one of my best friends moving to Boston today. Sort of just feel like staring at a wall for the rest of the weekend…or at this bodega kitty (follow me on Instagram: boredvegetarian).