Here is a great stuffed shell dish that I put together with what was in my refrigerator. Really I had a beautiful bunch of spinach that came in my CSA box that needed a good home and this is what happened. Jumbo shells were stuffed with ricotta cheese , small amount of Italian sausage, and topped with a simple tomato sauce. They were lighter than most shells that I have made because they lacked the addition of mozzarella cheese on top. You could certainly add it if you’d like. One of the most popular recipes on my blog now is one that I have been using for about ten years Stuffed Mexican Shells. Check out what my students had fun doing in lab last week. Looking at their photos you can tell that they had a little trouble with the recipe, but even so they all were very edible. This is so rewarding! I have had a half-dozen students bring me their phone with pictures of these stuffed shells that they prepared for their family. Now I have done my job. They are cooking for their families and reaping the rewards. Teaching at its best!
Stuffed Shells with Spinach and Italian Sausage Yield: 16 shells
- 16 jumbo shells cooked according to directions
- 16 oz. ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 lb. Italian sausage cooked and drained
- large bunch of spinach
- 28 oz. can Italian style tomatoes in juice
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Heat saucepan over medium high heat. Add olive oil and garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Watch carefully. Burned garlic will be bitter.
- Add tomatoes. If necessary cut into small pieces with kitchen shears. Bring to a boil then turn to simmer and cook for 30 minutes.
- Mix ricotta cheese with egg, nutmeg, and Italian sausage.
- Saute washed and dried spinach in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil until wilted. Add to cheese mixture.
- Stuff shells with cheese mixture.
- Place about a cup of tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 in. casserole dish.
- Place stuffed shells on top of the sauce.
- Top shells with the remaining sauce.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes.
- Just a note for the cooks: I found that these shells were not as good the next day.
Here are the photos for the Mexican Stuffed Shell Lab: