|This recipe was a HUGE success.
My guys did not miss the meat for a second.
Lent begins next Wednesday. As a Roman Catholic this means no meat on Ash Wednesday or Friday’s throughout the six week penitential season. I am always looking for new recipes to try that are meatless since we keep to the old rules and do not eat meat on Friday’s throughout the year. So I thought as a motivation for me and hopefully a help to those of your who also follow this religious practice, I would only post meatless recipes for the next six weeks.
Oh I can see my boys sweating it out now.
As you know, I live with two major carnivores. My hubby grew up in Oklahoma, the land of beef, beef and more beef. Throw in a little hog and he is in…well…hog heaven.
Yes, I really did just type that.
Anyway, both he and my son are not big veggie eaters either so any opportunity that I have to throw something green their way, I take it. This recipe had TWO veggies and enough cheese to mask any healthy taste that might possibly spoil the final dish. The Quick Tomato Sauce I make in large batches and freeze so I have it on hand at all times. It is fabulous all by it’s lonesome on pasta or your favorite Chicken Parm.
So let’s get cooking. I look forward to exploring a variety of different cultures through their food and am looking forward to getting into a vegetarian state of mind. I will also post a recipe on Tasty Tuesday’s so there will be two entries a week.
I hope that you will leave comments when you try these recipes. It’s always so wonderful to here form you all.
Celebrate the Feast!
|there’s cheese, spinach, more cheese and spinach and artichokes…yummo!|
Spinach and Artichoke Stuffed Shells
18 to 20 jumbo pasta shells
1 batch of Quick Tomato Sauce
2 Tablespoons of olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
ground black pepper
2 cups finely chopped onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 pound frozen spinach, thawed and wrung dry
1 (14-ounce) can of artichoke hearts (marinated or plain…your choice), chopped
1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
2 large eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tsp fresh basil, chopped
2 cups grated mozzarella OR provolone OR asiago cheese (divided)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta shells, and cook until al dente, 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally with a long-handled spoon to prevent the shells from sticking together. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Drain.
In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper and the dry herbs, and cook, stirring, until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl stir in the ricotta, eggs, mozzarella, Parmesan, artichokes, parsley, basil, salt and pepper. Add drained spinach to mixture. Stir.
Spread a layer of sauce in a 9″ x 13″ baking dish.
Drizzle tomato sauce on the bottom of baking pan. Fill each shell with about 2 tablespoon of the spinach-artichoke mixture, arranging them in the prepared baking dish as you complete them.
Pour the remaining sauce over the filled shells and top with the remaining 1 cup of mozzarella cheese. Bake, uncovered, until bubbly, about 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
recipe adapted from The Kitchen Boss
Quick Tomato Sauce
recipe from America’s Test Kitchen
Makes 3 cups, enough for 1 pound of pasta
This full-flavored tomato sauce takes only 15 minutes to prepare. High-quality canned tomatoes will make a big difference in this sauce. Our preferred brands of crushed tomatoes are Tuttorosso and Muir Glen. Grate the onion on the large holes of a box grater.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup grated onion , from 1 medium onion (see note)
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
2 medium garlic cloves , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes (see note)
1/4 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Ground black pepper
Heat butter in medium saucepan over medium heat until melted. Add onion, oregano, and ½ teaspoon salt; cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid has evaporated and onion is golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and sugar; increase heat to high and bring to simmer. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in basil and oil; season with salt and pepper. Serve.
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