For easy stuffed shells, first make pasta sauce in medium sauce pan. Precook shell pasta and combine elements of cheese stuffing in a large mixing bowl. Place stuffing inside the shells and cover them with sauce in a baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.Continue Reading
For simple pasta sauce, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and simmer finely minced garlic clove, a chopped medium-sized onion and a 28-ounce can of diced or crushed Italian plum tomatoes. If time is limited, substitute with pre-prepared store-bought sauce.
To make the cheese mixture, combine 2 cups ricotta, 2 cups mozzarella, 1 egg, herbs, salt and pepper to taste. Precook pasta shells in boiling, salted water for the time specified on packaging, then drain into colander and shock with cold water. If pasta is not shocked, it continues to cook and becomes mushier.
Once the individual chilled pasta shells are filled with cheese mixture, grease a baking dish with cooking spray or butter before adding the shells and sauce. If 30 minutes of baking is insufficient, keep watching until cheese and sauce are visibly bubbling and the cheese begins to brown. For a twist, consider browning ground protein, such as turkey or sausage, and adding it to recipe, effectively creating a meat sauce. Garnish finished plates with fresh cut herbs, such as basil or parsley. Serves approximately six.Learn more about Cooking