Manicotti shells, stuffed with a mixtureof cooked ground beef, peas, walnuts and pimiento, are bakedin a bechamel sauce infused with cheddar cheese and cayenne pepper.
Recipe: Stuffed Manicottiwith Peppery Cheese Sauce
12 packaged dry manicotti shells1 medium onion, chopped2 garlic cloves, finely minced3 tablespoons butter or margarine3 tablespoons all-purpose flour1 1/2 teaspoons chicken base or instantbouillon granules1/2 teaspoon paprika1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper(cayenne)1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground blackpepper1 1/2 cups milk1 cup (4 ounces) shredded process SwisscheeseSalt to taste12 ounces lean ground beef or pork1 cup frozen peas3/4 cup chopped walnuts2 tablespoons diced pimientoSliced green onion (optional)Diced pimiento (optional)
Cook pasta according to package directions.Drain pasta; rinse with cold water and drain again.
For sauce, in a medium saucepan cook thechopped onion and garlic in butter until onion is tender. Stirin flour, base or granules, paprika, red pepper and black pepper.Add milk all at once. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Gradually add cheese, stirringuntil cheese is melted. Remove from heat and season to tastewith salt.
In a large skillet cook ground meat untilbrown. Drain fat. Stir in peas, walnuts, 2 tablespoon pimiento,and 1 cup of the sauce. Fill each manicotti shell with about1/4 cup of the meat mixture.
Arrange filled manicotti in 6 individualau gratin dishes or in a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish. Pour theremaining sauce over the filled manicotti. Cover with foil.
Bake in a 350°F (175°C) oven about20 minutes for individual dishes (about 35 minutes for the largebaking dish) or until heated through. If desired, sprinkle withgreen onion and additional diced pimiento before serving.
Makes 6 servings.
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