Baked Pasta: Cannelloni With Ricotta, Bitter Greens And Cherry Tomato Sauce
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 750 g cherry tomatoes, halved
- 3 tablespoons chopped basil
- 100 g bitter salad greens such as rocket, watercress or spinach
- 500 g ricotta cheese
- 2 medium eggs, beaten
- 100 g freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
- 12 dried cannelloni tubes, 12 sheets fresh or dried lasagne or 1 recipe Fresh Egg Pasta
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- A piping bag with a large plain nozzle
- A baking dish, about 30 x 20 cm
- #This version of cannelloni combines a creamy sharp ricotta filling, speckled with slightly bitter green leaves and a sweet tomato sauce. The contrast in flavours between the sauce and filling is delicious.# Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) Gas 6.
- To make the tomato sauce, heat the oil in a saucepan, add the garlic and cook until just turning golden. Add the halved tomatoes. They should hiss as they go in – this will slightly caramelize the juices, and concentrate the flavour. Stir well, then simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the basil and season with salt and pepper (the sauce should still appear quite lumpy). Set aside.
- To make the ricotta filling, plunge the salad greens into a saucepan of boiling water for 1 minute, then drain well, squeezing out any excess moisture. Chop finely. Press the ricotta through a sieve into a bowl. Beat in the eggs, then add the chopped greens and half the Parmesan. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Cook the cannelloni or lasagne sheets in a large saucepan of boiling salted water according to the packet instructions. If using homemade pasta, cook for 1 minute. Lift out of the water and drain on a clean tea towel.
- Spoon the ricotta filling into the piping bag. Fill each tube of cannelloni or pipe down the shorter edge of each lasagne sheet and roll it up. Arrange the filled cannelloni tightly together in a single layer in a lightly oiled baking dish. Spoon over the tomato sauce and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes until bubbling. Serve immediately.