Spinach and ricotta cannelloni

Spinach and ricotta cannelloni, a classic, foolproof recipe and a family favourite. Cannelloni pasta tubes filled with a creamy spinach and ricotta filling, baked in a super simple and delicious tomato sauce and topped with melting mozzarella cheese.

You cannot go wrong with this recipe…

Like other classic Italian recipes such as lasagne and beef ragu, spinach and ricotta cannelloni is one of those recipes you will always go back to. It’s classic, comforting and surprisingly simple to make!

Serves -4

Ingredients

FOR THE SAUCE

  • 1 shallot
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 ½ cups (700g) passata/pureed tomatoes
  • 1 small bunch basil
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil

FOR THE FILLING

  • 12.3 oz (350g) ricotta cheese
  • 8.8 oz (250g) raw fresh spinach
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoon parmesan grated
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg
  • alt and pepper

TO ASSEMBLE

  • 2 cannelloni pasta tubes
  • 4.4 oz (125g) ball of mozzarella
  • Extra grating of parmesan

Method

FOR THE SAUCE

  1. Finely chop the shallot and garlic and saute in a pan with a little olive oil for around 1-2 minutes until soft and translucent but not browned. Add the tomato passata (pureed tomatoes) with some torn basil leaves, salt and pepper and simmer for around 5 minutes, set aside.

FOR THE FILLING

  1. Add the washed raw, fresh spinach to a large pan and wilt on medium heat. Add a splash of water (around 1 tbsp) to stop the spinach from burning and to help wilt it all. Leave to cool or rinse under cold water then squeeze out as much water as possible and finely chop.
  2. To make the spinach and ricotta filling, add the ricotta, parmesan, chopped spinach, egg, nutmeg and salt and pepper to a large mixing bowl and mix everything together until creamy and thoroughly combined.

TO ASSEMBLE

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  2. To assemble the spinach and ricotta cannelloni, add a few spoonfuls of tomato sauce to the bottom of a large baking dish. Transfer the spinach and ricotta filling to a piping bag or a disposable freezer bag with the corner cut off and pipe the filling into the cannelloni pasta tubes. Add each filled cannelloni tube to an even layer in the baking dish.
  3. Top the cannelloni with the remaining tomato sauce then top with torn mozzarella and grated parmesan. Cover with tin foil and bake for 30 minutes then uncovered for 10 minutes or until the cheese is golden and bubbling.

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