Share it Please
For the Shells:
- 1 (12-ounce) package jumbo shells pasta
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 pound thick-cut pancetta, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 16 oz frozen spinach, thawed and drained
- 1 (15-ounce) container low fat ricotta
- 1 cup Italian mix cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 can of basil and garlic chopped tomatoes
For the Sauce:
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 2 cups Italian mix cheese, plus 1/4 cup
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon 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 minutes. Drain pasta.
Warm the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook until lightly golden, about 5 minutes.
While that is cooking, empty can of tomatoes into a food processor and pulse until it become a slightly chunky sauce. Then pour into a large baking dish and set aside.
Remove the pancetta from the pan when it's golden brown with a slotted spoon and transfer to a large bowl.
Add the spinach, ricotta cheese, Italian cheese, and pepper. Stir to combine.
Stuff the shells with about 2 tablespoons of the spinach mixture in each and place the stuffed shells in the baking dish on top of the tomato sauce.
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 the heat to very low and add the 2 cups Italian cheese, parsley, and pepper. Stir until the cheese is dissolved. Pour the sauce over the shells. Top with the remaining 1/4 cup Italian cheese. Bake until golden on top, about 25 minutes.
The end result? Mouth-watering goodness. YUM!
Turned out great. The tomato sauce I added to the recipe balanced out the richness of the cheese. If I make it again, I may add some sausage or shredded chicken. My hubby is a meat lover, for sure.