A delicious twist on traditional stuffed shells! These are stuffed with roasted butternut squash and ricotta cheese, then drizzled with a creamy sauce made with wine and a little sage. Finish them off with pine nuts and blue cheese crumbles. For a big family party, we'll make 1 pan of these, 1 pan of spinach stuffed shells and 1 pan of traditional stuffed shells - something for everyone!
2/3cupgrated pecorino romano cheeseor Parmesan cheese
2 1/4cupsheavy creamdivided
2/3cupwhite wine(I used chardonnay)
2tablespoonsmild blue cheesecrumbled (I used buttermilk blue)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Start heating a large pot of salted water to boiling.
Place squash pieces on large baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Toss to coat. Roast for 20-25 minutes or until soft when pierced with fork. Remove from oven. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. (for baking the stuffed shells)
In a large saute pan over medium heat add 1 tablespoon oil, shallots, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, 2 teaspoons sage and garlic. Saute for about 5-6 minutes or until softened.
Boil pasta for 1-2 minutes less than what the box states. Drain and spread on a baking sheet until ready to use. This will keep them from sticking together.
Place roasted squash pieces in a medium bowl and use a fork to mash them. They can be a little uneven. It's nice to have some varied texture.
In a large bowl combine the squash, 1/2 the shallot mixture, ricotta cheese, romano cheese, 1/4 cup heavy cream and egg.
Spray baking dish with cooking spray (or brush with olive oil). Spoon about 2 rounded tablespoons filling into each shell and arrange in dish.
Warm up the remaining shallot mixture in pan, deglaze pan with white wine and simmer to reduce by half. Add 2 cups heavy cream, 1 teaspoon minced sage, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to pan and simmer until thickened.
Pour sauce evenly over stuffed shells. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons pine nuts and 2 tablepoons blue cheese over shells. Bake covered at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, then uncovered for 20 minutes or until bubbly and hot.
Notes: I've been tweaking this recipe for a while. I discovered the butternut squash is better roasted rather than steamed or sautéed. The roasting concentrates the flavor and there is less moisture to make your filling watery. Instead of pureeing the butternut squash I like it mashed. It is nice to have a little more texture in the filling. The cream sauce is better without the addition of romano cheese. It has a nice lighter flavor with the wine and sage. I've gone back and forth with the blue cheese. If you're not a fan of the blue simply omit it. I've tasted with/without many times and I prefer with. I like just a few crumbles placed on top of each shell. I was also careful to find a very mild blue. I shopped at Wegmans and in their cheese department they have the cheeses labeled with "mild", "medium" labels and so forth. I chose the pre-crumbled buttermilk blue.
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Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells https://www.epicuricloud.com/?p=166 February 19, 2013