stuffed shells

So here’s what happened.

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I made that vodka sauce pizza, and then I had some leftover ricotta and mozzarella cheese. And I thought to myself,

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What other carbohydrate can I use to deliver all of this cheese to my face?

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I always thought of stuffed shells as being a “winter” meal. Maybe because that’s when my mom made them, maybe because it’s comfort food? Not sure. But these still felt very spring/summer appropriate.

It’s another seemingly high-maintenance meal that is actually really quick and easy to pull together.

First we just cook some jumbo shells in salted water- cook them for about 1-2 minutes less than package directions. They have to be flexible enough to fill, but you want them to still have a bite because they’ll finish cooking in the oven.

While the shells are cooking, we make our filling:

1 cup ricotta cheese

1 cup whole milk mozzarella cheese, grated

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup chopped herbs- I used basil and parsley, and some arugula which I KNOW is not an herb but it’s still green and tastes good

1 clove minced garlic

salt and pepper to taste

Whip all this stuff together until the cheeses are blended and it’s all flaked with green.

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Line the base of a baking dish with a thin layer of sauce (the vodka sauce is back!). Fill each shell with about a tablespoon of the cheese mixture.

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Note: I only had enough cheese mixture to do about half of the shells. It’s easily doubled, or you can just cook half the box of pasta. Or you can snack on the plain under-cooked pasta shells. Who would do that?!

Pour more sauce over the top of the shells. You can either bake them now, or refrigerate until you’re ready to bake. Pop them in at 350 for about 15-20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling.

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I recommend eating these alone or with someone who loves you unconditionally, because really the best way to do it is to shove a whole shell in your mouth. Fork and knife optional.

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