Saturday, February 1, 2014

Blue Cheese Stuffed Pasta Shells

I made generic stuffed pasta shells last week, and as we were eating them, Daddy mentioned that they might be good with blue cheese instead of Mozzarella.
He mentioned it again at least three times in the next few days.
Because I can take a hint, and because I still had leftover ingredients to use up, I made them again for supper - with blue cheese. It's a simple dish, and one everyone in the family can be happy with.
Start by mixing your filling. Plenty of room for changing things up, but I used ground hamburger (browned, of course), a small container of Ricotta cheese, a small container of blue cheese, and just enough pasta sauce to stick it all together.
You can also add onions, garlic, mushrooms, veggies, spices, or other cheeses. Since the pasta sauce I used had most of those things in it already, I left it simple.
Cook the pasta shells al dente - by which I mean, just a tiny bit flexible, especially if you are planning to freeze this. Mushy pasta just ruins a meal, no matter how good the flavor is!
Pour enough pasta sauce into a baking dish to cover the bottom, and start scooping filling into the shells with a spoon. Fill them to bursting!

Lay them in the dish, closer together than the ones in this picture.
Once you have wall-to-wall shells, pour more pasta sauce over the top. Sprinkle with another container of blue cheese (saving out a bit for Daddy's salad) and a handful of Parmesan. Or Mozzarella if you prefer. Or shredded Swiss. Or just blue cheese.

Cover with foil and either freeze for later, or bake, covered, at 350 for about 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for another ten or so, then let sit for a few minutes (out of the oven) before serving. Mmmmm, cheese!

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