Friday, January 2, 2015

Baked manicotti

When I was going to the store, I had to Google the difference between cannelloni and manicotti. The original recipe calls for cannelloni, but I was struggling to find it. From reading online, I couldn't tell much of a difference, so just went with manicotti

Although it's a pain in the butt to stuff the manicotti's it wasn't as bad for me this time (see the last time I made manicotti here). I actually read the box (weird, right?) and cooled the manicotti on a baking sheet. It helped so much--and, as an added bonus, the noodles didn't stick together!

Anyway, this recipe also calls for you to make your own bechamel sauce. Scott absolutely LOVED this recipe. I would definitiely make it again. I was actually surprised as I didn't add any extra seasonings (or salt). The original recipe calls for using brats and removing the casings, but just using a 16-19oz package of regular Italian sausage will work too. It takes awhile to make (you need at least an hour), but it's totally worth it. Plus, you could probably put it together a day or so ahead of time.

One last thing, when it says large skillet, definitely use the biggest one you have! I got everything to fit in our standard, what I would call medium, pan with a bit of a raised edge, but it got a bit messy when I started stirring.



Baked manicotti-adapted from Taste of Home Cooking School, original recipe from Johnsonville
Total time: 1 hour
Serves 6

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 ounces mushrooms, chopped
  • 16-19 ounces Italian sausage
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • 12 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 box (14 shells) manicotti
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
For the filling
In a large skillet, add oil, onion and mushrooms over medium heat and cook for about 5 minutes. Add sasauge, stir and cook until the onion is softened and the sausage is no longer pink. Set aside.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions, minus 2 minutes (mine was about 5). Drain, place on a baking sheet to cool.

For the bechamel sauce
Preheat oven to 450 degreesMelt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stirr until well incorporated. Slowly add milk and whisk together until smooth. Continue whisking as mixture comes to a slow boil and begins to thicken. Stir half the sauce into the sausage mixture and reserve the other half to pour over the manicotti. Add 12 ounces shredded mozzarella to the sausage mixture and stir while adding in the egg yolks. Cover and set aside if pasta is not yet cool enough.

Spread 3/4 cup of the sauce on the bottom of a 9x13 inch greased baking dish. Spoon filling into each pasta tube carefully by starting at one end and pushing through with a spoon or your finger.

Nestle the manicotti in the sauce and cover with remaining sauce (if there is any extra sausage mixture, but this on top as well). Top with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.

Bake for 45 minutes or until heated through and the cheese starts to turn golden. Remove from oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.


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