These are just fantastic! This is one of DH's favorite things I make. Great for family dinner or pot luck. This is really pretty easy to make and true Italian comfort food!
- 12 ounces jumbo pasta shells
- 1 1⁄4 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded (Reserve 1/4 cup)
- 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 lbs ricotta cheese
- 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 8 ounces spaghetti sauce (jarred or homemade)
- fresh basil, chopped, for garnish
- In an 8 quart pot, bring water to a boil and cook shells for 8 minutes or until al dente.
- Drain and cool immediately with cold water.
- Drain and place open side down on paper towels.
- In a medium bowl, combine the rest of ingredients except the spaghetti sauce.
- Reserve the 1/4 cup of Mozzarella.
- Place a thin layer of spaghetti sauce into the bottom of a 12 x 9 x 2 inch baking dish.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spoon the cheese mixture into each pasta shell and place open side up, in a single layer, in prepared pan.
- Pour the rest of sauce over the stuffed shells.
- Loosely cover with foil and bake for 40 minutes.
- During last 5 minutes of baking, remove foil and sprinkle remaining Mozzarella cheese on top.
- Bake 5 more minutes.
- Garnish with fresh chopped basil.
This recipe is nearly the same as what we have used for the last 25 years in our restaurant. The minor differences are we use 2 eggs and 2 egg yolks, we add a pinch of nutmeg and we use our own meat based sauce...other than that this is identical. Since it is one of the dishes that is most popular, we make this in 20 lb batches of filling. We also do this same recipe with spinach and with spinach and sausage. We use browned hot Italian sausage and squeezed cooked spinach and add a little of each to the filling but the original Cheese only is still the most popular.
I think this recipe is AWESOME, with just a couple minor modifications (which is why I gave a 4 instead of 5). 1--I used 10 oz of shredded mozz cheese rather than measuring in cups, which seems arbitrary to me. This amount was perfect. 2--4 large eggs was way too much. My husband said it was almost like eating scrambled eggs & I agree. Next time I will use 2 large eggs. 3--8 oz spaghetti sauce was way too little. I used 26 oz of chunky homemade sauce and it was perfect. 4--salt & pepper is a must in every recipe. I used 1 tsp salt. Maybe not needed if using jarred sauce, but the cheese filling is not salted otherwise. 1 tsp of pepper seems excessive; I used maybe 1/2 tsp of fresh ground. I really liked that the amount of cheese mixture filled the shells perfectly, and the filled shells filled the pan perfectly. And the taste was spectacular!
This was really yummy. I added fresh cooked and chopped spinach to mine, but otherwise cooked it as stated in the recipe. I used a large ziploc bag with the corner cut off to squeeze the filling into each shell. This presented beautifully and was hard to stop eating them. They are even very good as leftovers. Thanks for sharing!!