TGIFFFFFFFFFF!!! Even though it was a short week, I’m GLAD it’s over! I literally got my butt-kicked everyday by my personal trainer… fun times. I’m feeling good, but definitely looking forward to low impact excercise for the next 2 days… and of course… WINE 😉
While on the theme of getting my butt-kicked, I decided to kick it myself in the kitchen by cooking a million dishes (ones I’ve made before, don’t worry you’re not missing anything) You see… I made the amazing mistake of joining BJ’s Wholesale Club… YEAH! Can we say 6 cans of crushed tomatoes and 6 pounds of different Barilla pasta for around $10 combined? and don’t even GET me started on the cheese section! Seriously needed some major self-control last night while shopping… I managed to fill an entire Tide box full of Italian yummy goodness ingredients for under $45.
Lastly, I have to just get a mini rant off my chest that bothered me yesterday. I am SO sick of the bicyclists riding in the street and NOT obeying the traffic laws… and with my fabulous driving skills, these people are in serious danger if they get around me and aren’t paying attention… like the Woman that decided to go straight through the red light on East ave, WHILE I was making a left on East from Oxford WITH my Green light, might I add… turning into a single lane? Seriously lady? Now before all you cyclists get all revved up, I’m not talking about road bikes and racers that take it seriously. I’m talking about the casual rider on their mountain bike from 1990 or a cruiser with the wide-set handles and big seat (which, I WANT by the way…) All I have to say is, if you’re going to be on the road, follow the road laws. Plain and simple.
Enough of that, let’s discuss FOOD. These shells are loaded with fun (and simple) ingredients, but what really makes the dish is the sauce that was lightly poured over it. Now, if you’re watching your cals, completely nix the sauce, but BOY are you missing out. Everything is fine in moderation! 😉
- 1 LB Large Shells
- 1LB ground turkey
- ~16oz Ricotta
- 2 cups shredded mozz cheese
- ~18 cherry tomatoes, quartered
- Italian seasoning
- Crushed red pepper
- 1 stick salted butter
- 1-1/2 – 2 cups chicken broth
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- +1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- +1/4 cup flour
- Boil a large pot of oiled and salted water, cook shells AL DENTE (this is very important!) Drain, stir gently with olive oil and set aside.
- In the meantime, mix together ground turkey with Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and salt-n-pep. Then mix in Ricotta and MORE Italian seasoning (don’t overdo it if you already put the amount in you wanted) Add/mix shredded mozz and fold in gently the cherry tomatoes.
- Stuff the shells so they still close, but are nice and FAT, lay them in a sprayed or buttered dish and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, cook down the butter and garlic on Med-low heat, stirring often. Add 1 cup chicken broth and half the flour, continue to stir as it thickens. Add more broth and more flour and continue on heat to let the ingredients melt together.
- If the consistency is thick paste, add more stock. Once it’s at a nice consistency (similar to paint when you first crack it open and stir it with the stick) then add the parmesan. Continue to stir and raise heat if needed to melt the cheese in the sauce. You don’t want it really chunky or lumpy.
- Same thing, it should be the consistency of paint (sorry this is my architecture analogy, but hopefully everyone has painted at least once in their lives)
- Now pour over shells, it should get a nice coat on each of them and then rest a bit in the bottom. Don’t DROWN them!
- Bake, covered with tin foil, at 350 for 35-45mins. Keep an eye on them, but they shouldn’t burn with the foil over them.
- Serve with fresh basil overtop.
- Bon Appétit!!