Spinach and Three Cheese Manicotti

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Tired of the serving the same old same old? I bet your family is well. Here’s a new pasta dish for your family that will having them singing praises to their dear chef mama or papa! Not only that.. it’s fast and easy peasy to put together! Can’t beat that. This is even impressive enough to serve when company comes over. Yup… it’s nice and versatile like that. I made the sauce super simple, so don’t bother gussy-ing it up. Trust me on this one…. it’s perfect just as it is. No frills needed. And it’s “amore”!

spinach and three cheese manicotti

Spinach and Cheese Manicotti

 8 oz. package manicotti, cooked according to package with olive oil to prevent sticking. Drain and lay flat on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Filling:

1- 10 oz. package frozen chopped spinach, cooked, drained and blotted dry

  • 15 oz. tub ricotta cheese

2 c. mozzarella cheese, grated, divided

½ c. parmesan cheese

2 large eggs

½ t. salt

¼ tsp. nutmeg

dash of ground black pepper

 Simple Tomato Sauce:

1 ½ Tbsp. olive oil

  • 28 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 14 oz. can tomato sauce

4 large garlic cloves, minced

½ t. dried basil

¼ t. dried oregano

ground black pepper to taste

 Garnish:

Fresh Italian parsley, chopped

 Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium sauce, heat the olive oil and sauté the garlic, careful not to burn it. Add the tomato sauce and the rest of the ingredients. Heat on simmer for 10 minutes.

 In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese and the other two cheeses and 2 eggs. Mix well. Add the salt, nutmeg and pepper. Mix well. Add the spinach and combine well.

 In a large 13×9 baking dish, ladle a layer of tomato sauce on the bottom. With a small spoon, fill the manicotti with the filling (I like to fill the manicotti half way, turn it and fill the other half.). Lay the filled manicotti in the tomato sauce in the baking dish. Continue, laying the manicotti side by side. When they are all filled. Top the manicotti with rest of the tomato sauce. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover; top with 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh Italian parsley. Serve warm.

 Make 12 manicotti

 

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