April 9, 2013

Spinach and Cottage Cheese Cannelloni

This recipe is delicious and easy peezy.  Even my vegetable shunning 2 year old scoffs this down.  Spinach is one of the few vegetables she will eat without much fuss.  That might have something to do with the fact that she loves cheese so we told her that spinach is "cheese".  Oh the lies we tell to get them to eat their veggies.  She's never pulled us up on it so spinach will remain "cheese" in our house.  This dish can be made in advance, uses minimal dishes which is always brilliant and is cheap to make.

You'll need:

1 small onion (finely diced)
1 250gm container cottage cheese
1 350gm packet frozen chopped spinach (thawed with moisture squeezed out)
2 eggs
Approx 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1 400gm tin pasta sauce
1 packet cannelloni shells


Preheat oven to 180 degrees.  Combine the onion, cottage cheese, spinach, eggs and cheese in a bowl.  (Keep a little cheese aside to sprinkle on top at the end).

Spread a small amount of pasta sauce in the bottom of a rectangle baking dish.  Stuff cannelloni and place in the baking dish.

Top with remaining pasta sauce and sprinkle with cheese.  Add a couple of tablespoons of water to the base of the dish for extra moisture.  Cover with tin foil and bake for 45 minutes.  Remove tin foil and bake for another 15 minutes.

Serve with a green salad and garlic bread.  Enjoy.
Tips:
- Dice the onion quite small.  If it is too large it won't cook in time and you'll have crunchy onion in your cannelloni.
- You don't have to use mozzarella cheese which can be quite expensive for a small block.  Any cheese will do to keep the cost down.
- Pasta sauce does not have to come from a fancy glass jar.  I use Watties pasta sauce which comes in a tin can which you can buy on special for around $1.29.  It's delicious!
- Rather than measuring out a couple of tablespoons of water, I usually add a little water to the pasta sauce tin and swish it round to use up all of the sauce in the tin.
- Stuffing the cannelloni is the only time consuming part.  I have tried various methods of stuffing the cannelloni to speed things up a bit including piping it in but its too chunky.  Stuffing the cannelloni by hand is still the best way I have found.

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