Tuesday, August 11, 2009

soooo, what have I made today...?

NOTHING! That's right. So, I think I'll find a picture of something I've made in the past and try to remember the recipe! Or at least the story behind it. There very well might not be one though, or the one that does exist is gone in the black hole of forgetting.


stuffed pasta shells

I think these were impulsive because I wanted to really make a dinner that had several steps and elements. The flavors of this meal are extremely traditional and don't really stray far from what most people know. Things can definitely and deliciously be altared by adding mushrooms, or eggplant to the meat sauce, as well as maybe some roasted red peppers. Meat can probably even be subbed out for tofu if it's very firm and as dry as possible. Cheeses, also. Optional. Use whatevs. Skip red pepper flakes if that's offensive. Follow your palate and be off!

So umm...large pasta shells
1.5 cups ricotta or so
1 egg
1 tbsp half and half, heavy cream or milk
fresh basil (makes a world of difference in the world of herbs)
salt (half tsp or a little more...i don't go shy on the flavoring)
pepper (half of however much salt you used)
oregono (dried's cool)
ground meat of choice (if using sausage, remove casing and eliminate following seasonings. heads up: turkey or chicken, i think, is delicious, but the taste and texture is VERY different for eaters used to normal meat sauce. maybe up the seasonings on the poultry as well. even better, sautee them with shredded zucchini to imitate fatty moisture. i swear it's fabulous)
more oregono
another half tsp of salt (if you didn't use sausage!)
another whatever amount of pepper
red pepper flakes
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, chopped
1 can stewed tomato
1 can tomato paste
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup of wine (a mild white wine is best)
olive oil
shredded provolone
shredded mozzerella
some good (for the love of shiva) parmesan

i think that's it

sauces all take their bit of time, so start on the meat sauce. get a relatively deep sautee pan screaming hot and do a ring or so of olive oil. add onion (and zucchini if necessary) and wilt slightly. add the sausage or ground meat (if using the latter, please add salt and pepper!) to the veggies and let brown for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. add garlic in a couple minutes (it gets bitter if cooked for too long). let it do its thing. finish browning. drain meat if there is alot of excess fat (be super careful...that shit is hot) add red pepper flakes and oregono. then the tomato paste, canned tomatoes, sugar and wine. let simmer (bubble softly and steam) uncovered stirring occasionally as sauce thickens. i have no clue how much time this takes, but it must not be too long. when you think it's good, just let it sit with the lid on.

boil pasta in VERY SALTY water. i'm serious. like the ocean.

combine ricotta, egg, cream, fresh basil, another garlic clove or two if you feel like it, and the salt and pepper.

oven should be at just like 350 or something.

now assemble. casserole dish of some kind is good. spoon small amount of red sauce on bottom and swoosh it around so it covers the dish. then? stuff yo shells! top with cheeses, making sure the parmesan is on the very top (it gets crustiest). i seriously also have no clue how long you bake this for.
maybe like 20 minutes?
try it and let me know!

favorite sweatshirt (:

gnight my little food mongers <3

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