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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Pancetta Stuffed Shells with Asiago Cheese and Spinach

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Here is another one I found on the Everyday Italian. This one is absolutely spectacular!! It's not hard to make. About 1/2 hour prep and 1/2 hour baking. It is a very rich dish and a little goes a long way on the palette.

Another family favourite has been born from this recipe.

Pancetta Stuffed Shells



1 (12oz) package jumbo shells pasta (I use 1 box Lancia)

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ lb thick cut pancetta (about ¾ inch cubes)

2 pounds frozen spinach, thawed and drained (I use about 2 packages)

1 (15 oz) container of whole milk ricotta

1 cup grated asiago cheese

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

½ tsp ground nutmeg


1 tbsp butter

1 clove garlic, minced

1 cup cream

2 cups grated asiago cheese plus ¼ cup

¼ cup chopped parsley

¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper.


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F

For the shells:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain Pasta.

Warm Olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook until lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Remove the pancetta from the pan with a slotted spoon and transfer to a large bowl. Add the spinach, ricotta cheese, asiago cheese, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir to combine. Stuff the shells in a large, buttered baking dish. This recipe will fill this dish plus a small dish

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For the sauce:

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Turn heat to very low and add the 2 cups of asiago cheese, parsley and pepper. Stir until the cheese is dissolved. Pour the sauce over the shells. Top with remaining ¼ cup asiago cheese. Here is an illustration of it ready to go in the oven. I have a small ladle that I spoon the sauce over each shell and then distribute until the sauce has been spread between the two dishes.

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Bake until golden on top, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve.

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1 comment:

  1. Marnie, looks like another fantastic hit! We're having a pasta day at work next Friday and I may take this.


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