Here's a new variation on pasta that I tried for the first time-it goes in the lasagne, manacotti category and I think it's easier to prepare and serve because it holds together in nice, neat shells even when served piping hot! Serve with crusty artisan bread and a good green salad.
32 jumbo pasta shells
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 pound baby spinach
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
16 oz. part-skim ricotta cheese
16 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese, grated
1 tablespoon chopped dried basil-or ¼ cup fresh
2 cups marinara sauce
2+ tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta shells and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain well then toss with oil in a large bowl; set aside. Chop spinach and transfer to a large bowl. Add garlic, ricotta, mozzarella, basil, salt and pepper to make the filling. Spread about 1 ½ cups of marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch shallow baking dish large enough to hold the shells in a single layer. (I spray it first with Pam to make clean up easy!) Fill each shell generously with spinach mixture and arrange in the dish. Pour remaining sauce over shells and top with Parmigiano Reggiano. Cover with foil and bake until hot throughout, 20 to 30 minutes, then uncover and continue baking until golden brown, about 10 minutes more.