This is my easy stuffed shell pasta – with artichoke, spinach and blue cheese.
So, first thing’s first – ingredients that are needing for one portion of stuffed shells:
Shell Pasta – about two handfuls of pasta were enough for me (roughly 10-12 shells)
Artichoke hearts – I used 7
Fresh spinach – two handfuls of fresh spinach
Blue cheese (gorgonzola)
Alright so first, boil some water for your pasta (add salt). While we wait for the water to come to a boil, we’re going to prepare the vegetables.
Steam your artichoke hearts. If you’ve bought whole artichokes, you have to extract the hearts by cutting away at all the external leaves (I’ve added a good tutorial at the bottom of this post). Once that’s done, steam them for a few minutes, then throw them into a pan to sauté with some olive oil and sliced scallions. Season well with salt (I like to add some dried chilli). Steam your spinach (season too – I like to add garlic) then add that to your sautéed artichokes and mix everything together.
While your vegetables are cooking, add the pasta to the water. Shell pasta sometimes takes a little longer to cook so I tried to coordinate my pasta with the veg, making sure to add the pasta to the water about half way through the completion of the vegetables.
Preheat your oven to about 150 degrees C.
Once both your vegetables and pasta (I like my pasta to be al dente, about 90% cooked through, and seeing as it has to go in the oven, I took it out a little bit before at about 85% so that it cooks nicely in the oven) are ready, drain the water from the pasta and lay them out on a flat baking tray while your vegetable cools off for a minute. Once the food isn’t as hot, stuff the spinach-artichoke into the shell pasta. Once they are all nicely stuffed, spoon some gorgonzola into each shell (how much you add is relative). Make sure it’s not overflowing out of the shells otherwise it’ll ooze off and burn on your baking try whilst in the oven!
Put your baking tin of pasta into the oven for about 7-10 minutes. You’re not trying to cook the pasta completely – just that last 10-15%. Once the cheese is all melty and bubbly, your pasta is ready. Serve immediately with some olive oil drizzled on top.
Artichoke heart preparation: