- Cook Time
- Difficulty Level Easy
STUFFED SHELL PASTA
Stuffed shell pasta (or conchiglioni) is a favourite in Italian homes for Sunday lunch! Seashell shaped pasta filled with creamy ricotta, tasty spinach and a hint of nutmeg is just the start of this dish…my tip is to use fresh buffalo mozzarella on top to give this baked dish a serious edge. In just 30 minutes you can make this recipe and it will likely be devoured in 3.
How to Make STUFFED SHELLS PASTA Like an Italian
Pasta shells/Conchiglione (amount depends on nbr of people – just remember, they grow!)
Mozzarella di buffalo or fior di latte (MUST be fresh)
For the sauce
2-3 garlic cloves
1 bottle homemade/good quality tomato passata
Salt & Pepper
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
For the filling:
400g/14.11oz fresh ricotta
300g/10.58oz baby spinach (fresh or frozen)
3 tablespoons grated pecorino/parmigiano cheese
Salt and Pepper
1 large pot
1 oven safe shallow oven pot/baking dish
Medium mixing bowl
Large spoon (for scooping up and spreading the sauce)
Garlic press/masher (if you have one)
- Before anything else, add 5L water to a large pot and once it boils add the pasta and cook according to packet instructions less 1min/30seconds.
HOW TO MAKE THE SAUCE:
- Shells pasta requires a very simple sauce so put a medium size pot on the stove at a low-medium heat.
- Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil inside and add 2-3 crushed garlic cloves.
- Cook for approx. 2 minutes stirring every so often or until they become shiny and start to golden in colour.
- Add a bottle of passata and stir well.
- Next add a sprinkle of salt and pepper then mix it through before adding the fresh basil leaves and gently stirring them in.
- Let this cook at a simmer for approx. 20 minutes.
HOW TO MAKE THE FILLING:
- Add spinach leaves to a large pan and leave to cook and wilt. This will need to be stirred every few minutes to make sure It all cooks well – you can add a small amount of water too if it helps.
- Put all the ricotta in a bowl and break it down using a fork.
- Once the spinach is ready (drain any excess water if necessary), add it to the ricotta and mix really well until it is completely combined.
- Add a sprinkle (or two) of nutmeg, pecorino cheese and some salt and pepper and mix once again.
- Then beat an egg on the side before adding it also and mix combine well.
HOW TO ASSEMBLE THE STUFFED SHELL PASTA:
- First up, strain the pasta – remembering to cook it 30 sec or 1 min LESS than the packet instructions!
- Preheat your oven to 180°C/356°F and line the baking tray with the tomato sauce you prepared, making sure to be generous!
- Using a tablespoon scoop up some of the ricotta mixture and spread it into the open part of the pasta shell until full.
- Fill each pasta shell with the mixture and line the pasta around the edges of your tray, working your way in until the tray is completely full.
- Add extra sauce on top of the stuffed shells pasta and sprinkle a generous amount of pecorino cheese on top before breaking pieces of the fresh mozzarella using your hands and adding it to the top.
- Bake in the pre-heated oven at 180°C/356°F for 20 minutes.
HOW TO SERVE:
Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes then serve.
If you’re having guests over, you can add a few fresh basil leaves on top as a garnish.
E ora si mangia, Vincenzo’s Plate…Enjoy!
If you love STUFFED SHELLS you will also love my Nonna CREPES CANNELLONI. Here is the recipe:
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