Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Family Favorite and Big Hit After Shelving Recipe For a Year

Pasta shells stuffed to the brim and drenched in Alfredo!
I pulled out an old favorite that my kids have been asking about for some time now. It is rare that they request anything but pizza or mac-n-cheese, so I do try to take them seriously when they want something real. I got the recipe from a magazine and tried it the way it was written the first time, three years ago. We decided it needed a lot of work, but wasn't worth abandoning altogether. So, after multiple variations, this is what we landed on, and what my picky children have asked for by name.

Stuffed Shells With Alfredo
1 Box of Pasta Shells (You can count out 20-22 shells, rather than cooking whole box, because I've only ever been able to fit up to 22 shells in a 9x13 baking dish)
5 Cans of Tuna or Salmon (use the pouches instead, to avoid any bones), drained
Handful of Chopped Cilantro
1/2 Red Onion, chopped
1 C Bread Crumbs
1 Lemon, juice of
1 Egg
1/2 C Shredded Mozzarella
1 Jar Prepared Alfredo Sauce (or your own home made, which is what we did this time)
Grated Parmesan

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Bring a pot of salted water to boil and cook the pasta, just to al dente. If it's too soft, then the shells tear and won't be easily stuffed. Once the pasta is cooked, drain the hot water and fill the pot with cool water. This will keep shells from sticking and drying out until you're ready for them. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, except for the Alfredo. Mix until well blended. Pour a bit of Alfredo into a greased 9x13 baking dish and spread around to coat. Using a large spoon, scoop the stuffing into a pasta shell and place in the baking dish. Continue stuffing shells until your pan is full. Pour remaining Alfredo over the top of the shells. Finish with grated Parmesan. Bake at 425 for approx 20 minutes, or until sauce is bubbly and the cheese has browned slightly.

This was a major hit with my husband and my children. Plus, after not making it for so long, they were bound to love it, but they said this was the best it's ever turned out!

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