As you can probably see there is a slight trend with my posts. I love cheese and I love pasta! This week team Bohlson made spinach and mushroom stuffed shells. Instead of using cups of ricotta for the stuffing, we substituted in low-fat cottage cheese. We also had a guest appearance in the Eat Fit Not Fat kitchen, Mr. 2fns.com himself, Jon Bard! He did a great job at stuffing shells 🙂 He also brought with him my very own 2fns.com apron (see below) all the way from Buffalo, NY. What a great gift! Now, with out further ado;
You will need:
For the stuffed shells: (yields 8 servings)
8 ounces (20 to 24) jumbo pasta shells
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling and brushing
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
12 ounces white mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 10-ounce package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 1/2 cups low-fat small-curd cottage cheese
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
A couple shakes of crushed red pepper flakes
A couple shakes of dried oregano
A couple shakes of cracked black pepper
For the sauce:
1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
1/2 -1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce
For the cheese sauce:
1/4 cup low-fat small-curd cottage cheese
1/4 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Boil large pot of salted water. Cook pasta shells for approx 7 minutes or until slightly softened but still firm. Drain and rinse in cold water. Drizzle olive oil over shells, toss and place aside.
Slice mushrooms thinly and dice onion, place aside. Heat pan with olive oil on medium heat . Saute onions till tender (approx 4 minutes). Add crushed garlic and stir (30 seconds). Add Mushrooms and saute till slightly brown (another 2 minutes or so). Add spinach and cook till heated through, approx 2 minutes. Remove from burner and let it cool completely.
Finely chop the spinach-mushroom mixture and combine in a bowl with the cottage cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, egg, basil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and a couple shakes red pepper flakes, oregano and pepper. Stuff each shell with about 2 tablespoons of the filling; set aside. Mr. 2fns.com himself helped stuff our shells tonight 🙂 Thanks Jono!
Make the cheese sauce: Combine the cottage cheese, mozzarella, parmesan and egg in the blender or food processor and puree until smooth.
Combine diced tomatoes and approx 1/2-1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce. Spread approx 1/2 of sauce mixture on bottom of a greased 9×13 in. Pyrex dish.
Add the stuffed shells, then top with the remaining tomato sauce. Cover with aluminum foil and bake 25 minutes; uncover and continue baking until bubbly, 15 to 20 more minutes. Turn on the broiler; drizzle the shells with the cheese sauce and broil, about 2 minutes.
Top shells with parmesan cheese if desired and enjoy! We also paired our shells with a side salad to add some healthy greens to our life. Special thanks to Jono and Adrienne Bard for their help in the kitchen this week.
Calorie Break Down:
Eat Fit Not Fat Spinach and Mushroom Stuffed Shells : Per serving: Calories 368; Fat 17 g (approx 3 shells)
Similar recipe found on allrecipes.com which used ricotta instead of cottage cheese: 550 calories and 24.5 g of fat per serving. ( http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Stuffed-Shells-III/Detail.aspx)
Check out the super cool apron I got for being a culinary food blogger on 2fns.com 🙂