Sunday, October 21, 2012

Stuffed Pasta

Believe it or not. I was laying around the house reading a cooking magazine dreading the idea of making dinner. I didn't want to do the dishes, I didn't want to chop, I didn't want to defrost and find some meat main course. Suddenly an idea clicked. Cannelloni! Why hadn't I thought of it before? I had ricotta -- probably teetering close to it's expiration date, the end of a salami, parmesan, leeks pulled from the garden, and a bottle of milk nearly ready for retirement. Clearly that seemingly lack luster collection of ingredients -- along with ground turkey in the freezer -- could come together into meat stuffed pasta and bechamel sauce. Along with a jar of the tomato sauce I canned earlier this month and a box of no cook cannelloni tucked away in the pantry, I had dinner.
I sautéed the meat and finely chopped salami along with the leeks and garlic in olive oil until cooked through and almost crispy. Then I deglazed the pan with white wine -- the last of a bottle taking up space on the fridge door. That mixture from the skillet joined ricotta, parmesan and egg (S&P of course), to make a tasty filling. I stuffed the pasta tubes and laid them in a baking dish with a pool of tomato sauce on the bottom. I covered the single layer of cannelloni with parmesan flavored bechamel sauce and another drizzle of tomato sauce. After 40 minutes at 350º I had a fridge clearing dinner that still felt special to James. Double score!

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