Saturday, August 29, 2009

Italian Stuffed Shells

One of my friends made this for a dinner for a large group of is and it was fabulous. I've since made it on my own and am surprised at how easy and DELICIOUS it is :)

6-8 servings
You will need:
  • 1 jar favorite spaghetti sauce (I recommend 2 but I LOVE sauce)
  • 1 pkg jumbo shells
  • 1 lb Italian sausage
  • 1 ½ tsp Italian seasoning (this is what the recipe calls for but instead I like to chop up a couple leaves of fresh basil and parsley, then just add dried oregano)
  • 15-16 oz ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 eggs
  • Garlic salt & pepper (there is no measurement on the recipe I have, I usually just put probably about ½ tsp of pepper and use fresh or pre-chopped garlic instead of garlic salt)

Cook shells, set in cold water until ready to use. Drain and dry with a paper towel just before stuffing

Cook the Italian sausage and try to break it into small crumbles. Mix in a large bowl Italian sausage, ricotta, ¾ of the mozzarella, Parmesan, eggs, seasonings, (other additional options: chopped onion, spinach, meat other than sausage, chicken does NOT work well unless you really season it, it can be pretty bland)

Coat the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish with a thin coat of spaghetti sauce to prevent sticking. Stuff shells with cheese mixture as full as you can get them and arrange in dish. After all the mixture is used (you usually don’t use all the shells) coat the shells with the remaining sauce. Top with remaining mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until heated all the way through. Uncover and let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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