• about 12 shells
  • 1 whole pepper minced
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • greens chopped
  • fresh basil chopped
  • 1 small container of ricotta cheese
  • about 2 1/2 cups of tomato sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • shredded mozzarella cheese

happy 2011 everyone! wishing you all good health and happiness for the new year.

so let’s get down to it, my first recipe of the new year! no it’s not black eyed peas. it probably should be because i can definitely use some good luck! we whipped up a quick stuff shells tonight.
everyone loves a quick simple meal, and mostly everyone i know loves pasta. most people wont make stuffed shells because they think it’s labor intensive, it’s not. tonight i will show you a simple technique that will allow you to stuff your shells quickly and have dinner on the table with in 45 minutes. listen, i’m not rachel ray, i’m not cooking a whole meal in 30 min or less:-)

why did i decide on stuffed shells? i managed to forget i had some sauce i had made in the beginning of the week in the fridge, i found it today along with some shells in the pantry. i had originally bought the ricotta cheese for a vegetable lasagna but we were out an about today and making lasagna wasn’t an option. i had to use that sauce quick and shells seemed like a perfect dish to use it for.

stuffed shells

(of course you can use any vegetable you have available or you can make with out veg, if you do just throw some fresh basil and salt and pepper in the cheese to give it some extra flavor and then stuff your shells)


  • bring a pot of water to a boil.
  • take out a oven proof pan and add sauce to the bottom.
  • put your ricotta cheese in a bowl to prepare for the veg.
  1. saute your shallot, garlic, pepper and greens in a touch of olive oil. it only has to cook for about 5 minutes. mix with cheese.
  2. when water comes to a boil, add your shells. this is where the trick comes in, do not fully cook your shells, cook them half way. take them out of the water, drain and run some cold water over to make them easy to handle.
  3. take a spoon with some of the ricotta mixture and stuff your shells. you can handle the shells easily now since they are cooled off and they are not fully cooked. gently ease the shell open and scoop your cheese inside. one by one put them in your pan you set up with the sauce. when done, cover with sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese.
  4. cook at 350 covered for about 10 minutes, take the foil off, cook for another 10 minutes. the shells will be soft and the sauce will be bubbling. the cheese will be smothering the shells…it’s just heaven.

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