Stuffed Shells with Homemade Sauce
- 1 T extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic (minced or chopped)
- 1 T light brown sugar
- 1 T sugar
- 1/4 t Italian seasoning
- 1 t dried basil
- 1 1/2 t salt
- 1 1/2 t dried oregano
- dash of red pepper flakes
- 1 small bay leaf
- 2 T tomato paste
- 8 oz tomato sauce
- 28 oz can San Marzano peeled tomatoes with the sauce, cut tomatoes into smaller chunks
- 12 oz Barilla Jumbo Shells (will not use the whole box)
- 15 oz ricotta cheese
- 4 oz (half bag) of Kraft shredded mozzarella cheese
- 3 oz (half bag) of Kraft finely shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 t salt
- 1 t minced garlic
- 1 t dried oregano
- First start your sauce and while it is simmering you can mix up the shells. You will also need to preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large skillet pan with high sides, at medium/high heat, heat 1 T extra virgin olive oil. When it is hot, add the yellow onion and garlic and cook until onions are tender.
- When onions are done, add San Marzano tomatoes (chopped and with sauce), tomato paste, tomato sauce, brown sugar, white sugar, Italian seasoning, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, dash of red pepper flakes, and bay leaf. Stir well.
- Bring to a boil and then put heat on low to allow sauce to simmer.
- Simmer for about 20 minutes. If you want sauce to be thinner, add water. Start your shells while sauce simmers.
- Boil a pot of water and add shells once water is boiling. You will probably use 1/2-3/4 box of shells, depending on how much you fill them with cheese mixture.
- While shells are in water, in a large mixing bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, salt, garlic, and dried oregano.
- In a small bowl, beat one egg with a fork then mix it into the cheese mixture.
- Drain shells. You want them slightly al dente.
- Put cheese mixture in a large Ziploc bag (serves as a great and easy piping bag to fill shells). Cut a small tip off one corner of the bag.
- Turn heat off sauce and remove bay leaf.
- In a 9 x 13 dish, place a small amount of sauce on bottom of dish.
- Carefully start piping cheese mixture into the shells one at a time. Place in dish cheese side up!
- When you are out of cheese mixture, pour remaining sauce over the shells. If you want, you can sprinkle extra mozzarella and Parmesan cheese over the top.
- Cover with foil and bake for about 25-30 minutes.