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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Manicotti with a few stray zucchini



I just followed the recipe on the box using my own sauce of ground beef, canned tomatoes with basil, garlic, and rosemary.

Once you have your sauce, boil the pasta in batches (I found two batches was fine) and let cool in a bowl of ice water. Make the filling:

2 cups ricotta cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated romano or parmesan cheese
2 eggs
2 T chopped fresh parsley
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper

I used fresh mozzarella, which worked fine. We had only a tiny bit of romano but that was all right as well. Instead of parsley I used thyme, which was lovely.


Spread a thin layer of sauce in your baking pan.


Now you'll want to fill a pastry bag with the cheese mixture and squeeze it into each shell. Fun! I found it worked best to fill from one end, and then fill in the rest through the other end. I also found it was impossible to photograph myself doing this as I have only two hands.

Line up your little guys in the pan. I had extra room, so I filled in with some zucchini.

Pour sauce over the whole thing and grate some parmesan or romano cheese over the top. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes; then remove foil and bake another 15 until top is browned. I forgot this last baking step, but it was still delicious.

Can cannoli be far behind?

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