Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Loaded Cannelloni with Kale & Sausage

I love pasta. I may cook Asian food more than anything else but I knew how to cook good pasta first. Are you surprised? :) I especially love pasta baked with cheese. You know what else is a winning combination? Kale and sausage! So good.

My parents were in town and my brother was coming over for dinner too so I wanted something that was loaded with goodness and filling enough to feed everyone well. I pretty much wanted to send my guests into a happy food coma :) Stuffed cannelloni baby! I'm calling this a loaded pasta dish because well it's loaded with stuff, as you will see below, and on first bite you'll notice a bit of sweetness, saltiness, a little tang, and hot spice. It's just loaded with taste! It's been awhile since I have had cannelloni and it just seemed like a fun idea. I also took this opportunity to try out the new pasta maker I just bought. Homemade pasta really isn't that bad. Oh the pasta and noodle possibilities are endless! I can't wait to make more of these from scratch :)

Now onto the important stuff, the recipe! It's the recipe I painstakingly documented while I threw this dish together in the kitchen this afternoon :( Man, I feel sorry for all the food bloggers out there, me included. I normally like to cook fast but documenting along the way really slowed me down. Holy cow. After all that work I absolutely have to blog about it now!!! However once this documentation is complete, I will be able to throw this dish together quickly the next time (and the many times after that) and THAT makes me super relieved and happy :)


 






Loaded Cannelloni with Kale & Sausage
Serves 10-12

2 cups (~1 pound) of fresh lasagna pasta
3 1/2 to 4 cups homemade tomato sauce (or store bought)
3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

Filling

450 g ground beef
450 g Italian sausage
1 bunch kale, cut in small pieces & discard most of stem
1 red onion
6 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp Provence herbs
1 tbsp olive oil
4 slices of sweet bread, toasted and broken into crumbs
2 eggs
1/2 cup Parmesan

Cook the ground beef for a few minutes and pour out some of the fat part way through. Add the sausage to this and cook until just done. Pour it into a bowl and set aside.

Fry the onion and garlic in olive oil until transparent. Add the kale, salt, pepper, herbs until the kale collapses. Remove from heat and transfer contents to a very large mixing bowl. Add the meat mixture to this. Toast the bread a bit longer than you normally would without burning it. Break it into small pieces and add it to the large bowl. Also add eggs and Parmesan. Mix well. This is your stuffing.

If you are using fresh pasta, there is no need to precook it. If it's dry pasta you may want to cook it a bit. Maybe 4 minutes? It will finish cooking with everything else in the oven.

Cut the lasagna sheets into the size of cannelloni you would like. I recommend narrower ones where you can't over stuff it. 2 1/2 to 3 inches thick on the shortest side would work well. This way when you cut into the cannelloni from the top, you will be able to taste all the layers in one scoop :) As for the length you can go as long as your dish will support. It might be easier to go with two medium lengths as opposed to one very long one though.

In an oven proof casserole dish, spread a thin layer of tomato sauce. Fill each pasta rectangle with stuffing, wrap around like a cannelloni, and place it in the dish with their seal down. Continue until the dish is filled. I have a small rectangular dish so I had to use another round dish. Spoon remaining tomato sauce on top. Sprinkle over shredded mozzarella cheese. Cover and bake at 375 F for about 35 minutes. Remove the cover and broil for 4-5 minutes to burn the cheese on top. Remove from oven and garnish with a bit of parsley on top if you like.

4 comments:

  1. mm your recipes look so delicious! are you going to post some vegan recipes that your hubby likes?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Are you vegan? :) Yes, I do plan to post a few things on vegan dishes. It's been a new territory for me in the past year. The interest in vegan is growing too so I definitely want to talk more about it. Thanks for asking!

    ReplyDelete
  3. nooooo i am not vegan, i eat everything. but i like the challenge of vegan cooking. heck anything tastes good with cheese all over it, plus i think vegan dishes are healthy and i never have to worry about contamination in the kitchen!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Well done, I have never tried to make my own pasta.
    Awesome recipe.

    Mica
    Best Reviews for San Antonio Movers

    ReplyDelete

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