Summer is coming to an end. Luckily, it will be back before we know it. That’s the funny thing about seasons…they keep coming back. Sometimes they return quicker than you thought possible.
You should decide to savor every minute remaining of this summer. Take each hot day and soak it all in. Let the people you love know just how much you care about them. One great way to do this is to prepare a special meal. How about some baked manicotti stuffed with ricotta cheese and spinach? You can't go wrong with this dish. It is sure to be a hit.
Saute the spinich in some olive oil with onions and garlic. Combine this with a blend of three delicious cheeses: mozzarella, parmesan, and ricotta. Stuff everything into pasta tubes, cover with sauce and more cheese, and voila...you did it. What can be bettter than easy and scrumptious? Serve the manicotti with a fresh salad and vegetables. Your loved ones will be so happy you did.
You can find all of these delicious ingredients at Whole Foods: 8855 West Charleston Blvd., Las Vegas 89117.
Time: 1 hour 15 minutes (although you can do a lot of the prep work ahead of time)
16 oz. Manicotti noodles
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 C. cooked spinach
1 pint ricotta cheese
1 ½ C. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 ½ C. parmesan cheese, shredded
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. garlic salt
1tsp. Emeril’s Essence
3 15 oz. cans of pasta sauce
Pour yourself a glass of good Italian Chianti. Sip this throughout the cooking process…slowly because this will take about an hour and 15 minutes to make. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the manicotti noodles and boil for ten minutes (or per the instructions on the package). Drain, rinse with cool water, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and set aside. In a skillet, heat olive oil on medium high heat. Add the onions. Sauté the onions for about five minutes. Add the garlic and sauté another five minutes. Add the spinach and let it wilt for another three minutes. Set aside and let cool. Mix together the ricotta cheese, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, and one cup of the parmesan cheese. Whisk together the two eggs and mix that into the cheese mixture. Mix in the spinach, onion and garlic to the cheese mixture. Sprinkle in some salt and pepper and mix well. Carefully stuff this cheese mixture into the manicotti pasta noodles. Pour about ¼ inch of the sauce into the bottom of an oven safe dish. Stack the noodles on top of each other if necessary. Pour the remaining sauce over the stuffed noodles. Sprinkle in the salt, pepper, and Essence on the sauce. Sprinkle over the rest of the parmesan and mozzarella cheeses on top of the sauce. At this point, you can cover this and put it in the refrigerator until you are ready to bake it for dinner or cook it straight away. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes.