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Spinach and Feta Stuffed Shells

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Cuisinart original
Flecks of spinach blend with feta and ricotta cheeses to make this stuffing for jumbo pasta shells. Use your own favorite tomato sauce, homemade or jarred, as the topping. Preparation: 15 to 20 minutes, plus 30 to 35 minutes baking.

Ingredients

36jumbo pasta shells (extra in case of breakage) 1⁄2tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 1⁄4cup finely chopped onion or shallot 1clove garlic, minced 11⁄2 teaspoons basil 11⁄2 teaspoons oregano 1package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed 1pound regular or part-skim ricotta cheese 8ounces feta cheese, crumbled 1⁄4teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 3cups tomato sauce (homemade or purchased) 2 - 3tablespoons freshly grated Reggiano Parmigiano cheese cooking spray

Nutritional information

Nutritional information per serving: Calories 452 (37% from fat) • carb. 51g • pro. 16g • fat 18g • sat. fat 8g • chol. 49mg • sod. 821mg • calc. 458mg • fiber 3g

Instructions

In a 5-quart stockpot, cook the pasta shells in boiling salted water according to package instructions. Drain, rinse and set aside on a sheet pan lined with plastic wrap. In an 8-inch skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and herbs; cook until softened and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a medium (3-quart) bowl and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Place the thawed spinach in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze the liquid from the spinach; discard the liquid (you will have about 3⁄4 cup chopped spinach). Add the spinach, ricotta, feta and pepper to the onion mixture in the bowl. Mix on speed 2 for 30 seconds, then increase to speed 4 and mix for 11⁄2 minutes. Stuff each cooked shell with about 11⁄2 tablespoons of the spinach mixture. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly coat a 13 x 9 x 2-inch (or equivalent) baking dish with cooking spray. Spoon 1 cup of the tomato sauce into the dish and spread evenly in the bottom. Arrange the shells, open side up. Spoon an additional 2 cups of the sauce evenly over the shells. Cover loosely with foil and bake in the preheated 375°F oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan. Let rest 5 minutes before serving. Tip: Measure out filling using an ice cream scoop—it is 13⁄5 tablespoons, just the perfect amount to fill each jumbo shell.