Stuffed Shell-athon

January 23, 2010 at 7:47 pm 11 comments

I don’t have much of an attention span so this afternoon I studied for awhile, then went for a run, then studied a little, then did some massive cooking. I didn’t get to cleaning….

I know I said I wasn’t going to run more than 3 days a week, or on back to back days, but this week is an exception. I may have “run” several times, but they’ve been really really short distances. Weds was only a mile and half! I think taking total mileage into account, and that I’ve been going easy on my runs, it’s ok just this once. (If you see me make this a habit please stop me:))

trail run

So today I snuck in another short run, again sticking close to the neighborhood. I did 2.5 miles in 23:43.  I think I found my perfect running temperature. No idea what it actually was, but 48 degrees was forecasted, so somewhere around there. Cold enough to still wear a headband, warm enough for short sleeves. Ok, I was probably pushing the short sleeves thing since I was only going for a short jaunt, but I would’ve been perfectly comfortable if I had worn gloves.

Cross your fingers back on track with 5 miles tomorrow!

I spent the evening cooking up a STORM in the kitchen. I made a mess. I wanted to make something that would freeze well for my friends that had the baby so they wouldn’t have to worrying about cooking some nights. I decided on stuffed shells! Then the more and more I thought about stuffed shells, I realized I haven’t had them in a long time and wanted them! So I made an extra batch. Half the clean up 🙂

I loved stuffed shells you can vary the ingredients to suit your mood (or your fridge) and you usually end up just fine!

stuffed shells for one

Turkey and Artichoke Stuffed Shells (and just turkey shells—I made one of each)

1 box jumbo pasta shells

1 container ricotta cheese

1/2 block neufchatel cream cheese

1 egg (or egg whites)

1 lb ground lean turkey

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic

1 cup chopped artichoke hearts

s&p to taste

handful fresh basil

assorted Italian seasonings

3-5 cups marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought)

1-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Boil water and cook pasta shells about 6 minutes (~half the time on the box- they’ll finish cooking in the oven). Set aside to cool.

Brown turkey, onions, and garlic. Season turkey with salt/pepper to taste. Set aside to cool. Mix together ricotta cheese, cream cheese, egg, basil, and seasonings. When meat/onion mixture has cooled, mix into cheese mixture.

Spoon 2-3 tablespoons into each shell; place face down into baking dish. When all shells are full, top with marinara sauce, then mozzarella cheese. Bake at 400 degrees 20-25 minutes. Freezes very well- cook up to an hour if frozen.

Notes: use any kind of ricotta cheese; my favorite is a mixture of fat free and whole. If you really want to use all fat free, definitely try adding the cream cheese- it gives it a rich, velvety texture.

ricotta cheese

Tastes great with spinach instead of (or with) meat for a vegetarian entree.

For seasonings, I usually use rosemary, thyme, and basil, or whatever I grab first.

stuffed shells stuffed shells

I put the extra batch I made directly in the freezer for a night where I don’t have time to cook something good. I don’t put as much cheese on when I freeze it, because I like to add extra right before I cook it. (I put some on in case I don’t have cheese when I want to eat it!)

I stole four shells out of my batch and made them for myself for dinner tonight.

stuffed shells

And two giant spoonfuls of the Mocha Almond So Delicious for dessert. so delicicious

I’m going to go have a wine-and-bad-Lifetime-movie-night with a girlfriend…she sent me a text saying eat a light dinner because she had lots of goodies prepared…can’t wait! 😉

Enjoy your Saturday night!

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Entry filed under: Dinner, Training. Tags: , , .

Run Reward In Defense of Food- But Not in Defense of Book.

11 Comments Add your own

  • 1. theprocessofhealing  |  January 23, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    Sounds like a pretty awesome Saturday night!

    And I loooove stuffed shells! I’ve never used cream cheese before but I bet that would make them so incredibly creamy, must try that!

    Reply
  • 2. Kristen @ Change of Pace  |  January 23, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    I’ve neer had stuffed shells with artichokes… Sounds really good! 🙂

    Reply
  • 3. marathonmaiden  |  January 23, 2010 at 9:22 pm

    is that a picture of where you run?! looks wonderful and very lovely

    Reply
    • 4. Heather  |  January 24, 2010 at 7:44 am

      It’s the 200ish yards of trail between my neighborhood and the road- It’s the best part of the whole run 😉

      Reply
  • 5. Katherine @ Lipgloss and Spandex  |  January 23, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    Those stuffed shells look awesome. And I’m a big fan of wine+bad Lifetime movies!

    Reply
  • 6. Nicci  |  January 23, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    I’m in love with this dish. Aww, looks extra yummy. I love dishes filled with deliciousness!

    Reply
  • 7. Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca)  |  January 24, 2010 at 12:34 am

    I absolutely LOVE stuffed shells – and your recipe sounds excellent … my mouth is watering!!!

    Reply
  • 8. Shannon  |  January 24, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Stuffed shells are a favorite of mine. My mom used to make them so they feel like comfort food. I am sure they will be a comfort to your friends with the new baby!

    Reply
  • 9. Karla  |  January 24, 2010 at 9:03 am

    You’re such a good friend! That’s so nice of you to make these for your friend! They look delicious!

    Reply
  • 10. Mary (Food Fit & Fun)  |  January 24, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    those stuffed shells look SO GOOD!!!! I need to try them!

    Reply
  • 11. shelly  |  January 25, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    Those shells looks great! I think I might have to cook some tonight.

    Reply

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