Well, I was too lazy to take myself down to another store, so I just waited. Last week, I finally got around to getting back to the store and what do you know, they had restocked my beloved shells. Now, I could've just made a casserole, but you know me--I'm a rebel. I wanted to do something a bit different, so I made individual casseroles. I adore these individual casserole dishes.
This works out perfectly because you can make a little or you can make a lot. I've included the recipe for 4 dishes, but as you will see, it's easily halved. Me? I made four because then I could eat them a second time. I am crazy for stuffed shells and all their cheesy glory!
Start by lining your dishes with a good layer of sauce. (Keeps the shells from sticking.)
And while I'm at it, I'm also boiling those shells according to the manufacturer's direction. But that's happening behind the scenes.
Then, mix up your filling. I've got some ricotta cheese, some provolone/mozzarella cheese, an egg (beaten), pepper, dried oregano and two cups of fresh spinach that I cut up (which is code for I tore it up with my hands.) Hehe.
Once my shells were cooked, I drained them and allowed them to cool a bit until they were cool enough to handle. Then, let the stuffing begin! I used about a tablespoon per shell. About seven shells fit per individual casserole.
YUUUUUUMMMMMMM! Check these out!
Then, top with more sauce and we're ready to bake!
OR you can wrap these and save them in the fridge until you are ready to bake!
Bake for 30-35 minutes on 350 degrees and then top with parmesan cheese if you like.
If you aren't going to eat all the casseroles at once, you can either bake them off and then reheat them in the microwave or you can leave them in the fridge and bake them when you are ready.
Billie's Stuffed Shells!
Time: Prep 25mins, Bake 35mins | Makes 4 servings | Difficulty: Easy!
You Will Need:
28 jumbo shells
16 ounces ricotta cheese (I used whole milk)
1 egg, beaten
1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese (I used a blend of provolone and mozz)
1/2 teaspoon dried oreganopepper (about 10 fresh grinds)
2 cups fresh spinach, chopped small
3 cups pasta sauce
4 individual casserole dishes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Boil a large pot of salted water and cook pasta shells according to manufacturer's directions.
While shells are boiling, line each casserole dish with a couple tablespoons of sauce (it keeps the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the dish.)
Next, mix up the filling for the shells. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, beaten egg, shredded cheese, pepper, oregano and spinach. Mix well to combine.
When pasta is done cooking, drain and allow to cool until you can handle it (just a couple of minutes should be good.) About seven shells fit per dish. Fill each shell with about a tablespoon of filling and place it in the casserole dish. Repeat until all the shells are filled and the casseroles are all filled.
Top with the remaining sauce. Bake the dishes on top of a baking sheet (just in case they bubble over) for 30-35 minutes. Serve with a salad and a smile and top with parmesan cheese!
If you prefer to eat them later, you can wrap them and keep them in the fridge until you are ready to bake them. Or, alternatively, you can bake them all off and keep them in the fridge and reheat them later in the microwave!