Saturday, November 15, 2008

Stuffed Shells with Arrabbiata Sauce

Cook Time: 35 min
Level: Intermediate
Yield: 8-10 servings


* 12 ounces (1 box) jumbo pasta shells (approximately 36 shells)
* 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for greasing baking sheet
* 6 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, diced
* 2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper flakes
* 2 garlic cloves, minced
* 5 cups marinara sauce
* 2 (15-ounce) containers whole milk ricotta cheese
* 1 1/3 cups grated Parmesan
* 4 large egg yolks
* 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
* 3 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
* 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint leaves
* 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese


Lightly oil a 12 by 9 by 2-inch baking dish and set aside. Lightly oil
the baking sheet and set aside.

Partially cook the pasta shells in a large pot of boiling salted water
until slightly tender but still quite firm to the bite, about 4 to 6
minutes. You will continue cooking the shells in the oven after they
have been stuffed. Using a slotted spoon, drain pasta shells and place
on oiled baking sheet, spreading them out so that they don't stick
together and allow to cool.

Heat the oil in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the
pancetta and saute until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the red
pepper flakes. Add the garlic and saute until tender, about 1 minute.
Add the marinara sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer, stirring often.

In a medium bowl, stir the ricotta, Parmesan, egg yolks, basil,
parsley, mint, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Spoon 1 1/4 cups of the sauce over the prepared baking dish. Fill the
cooked shells with the cheese mixture, about 2 tablespoons per shell.
Arrange the shells in the prepared dish. Spoon the remaining sauce
over the shells, then sprinkle with the mozzarella.

Bake in the lower third of your oven until the filling is heated
through and the top is golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes.

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