Prep 30 mins
Cook 12 mins
Rachael Ray, 'Book of 10'
- 1 (10 ounce) box frozen chopped spinach
- 8 jumbo pasta shells
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1 lb ground beef (or meatloaf mix-ground beef, ground pork, ground veal)
- 3 garlic cloves, two chopped, 1 crushed and halved
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- black pepper
- 1⁄8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1⁄4 cup italian-style breadcrumbs
- 1⁄2 cup grated romano cheese or 1⁄2 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese
- 1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
- basil leaves, torn (a few)
- Place the frozen spinach on a plate and defrost in the microwave on HIGH for 6 minutes.
- Wring the spinach dry in a clean towel.
- While the spinach is in the microwave, preheat the oven to 425° and, in a large covered pot, bring the water to a boil for the shells.
- Salt the boiling water and cook the shells for 6-7 minutes; they should still be firm at the center; drain.
- Drizzle them with oil and set aside in a shallow baking dish.
- While the pasta is working, brown the meat over medium to med-high heat in 1 tablespoon oil.
- Add the chopped garlic and onions to the meat; season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg; and cook the mixture for 5 minutes more.
- Transfer the meat to a bowl; add the spinach and mix them together.
- Add the egg, bread crumbs, and half the cheese and combine.
- Fill the shells with the meat mixture and sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top, then bake for 11-12 minutes to set the filling in the shells and crisp the pasta at the edges.
- While the shells bake, heat the remaining tablespoon oil in a small pot over low heat with the halved garlic clove and cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Remove the garlic, add the red pepper flakes, and cook for a minute more, then stir in the tomato sauce and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Stir in the basil.
- Pour 1/2 cup of sauce on each dinner plate and top it with 4 shells.