Spinach, ricotta and feta cannelloni
Cannelloni tubes filled with a tasty spinach,ricotta and feta filling, smothered with a creamy béchamel sauce on a bed of rich, tangy tomato sauce.
Comfort food at its best
I first ate Spinach and ricotta cannelloni several years ago at Spaghetti House.I can still remember the taste, absolutely delicious. I really wanted to recreate that taste, and think this especially with the addition of the feta cheese beats it hands down.
You will need 18-20 cannelloni tubes (feeds 6-7 people, with a serving size of 1-2 tubes per person)
For the tomato sauce:
3 garlic cloves crushed, 75gram butter, 400gram tin of chopped tomatoes, 500grams passata
Fry the crushed garlic in the butter until golden brown, add the tin of tomatoes and passata and some salt ( to taste, I usually add about a teaspoon). Bring to a boil and simmer for 20-30minutes till the sauce has thickened and reduced.
850ml milk, 2 bay leaves, a pinch of grated nutmeg, 90grams butter, 45grams plain flour
Heat the milk with the bay leaves and nutmeg (and a pinch of salt) till just boiling. Turn off the heat and leave aside. In the meanwhile melt the butter and mix in the flour to a paste. Add the milk to the paste a spoon at a time, mixing so fully combined each time. It may start of a bit on the lumpy side but will eventually be a smooth sauce. Once all the milk has been added keep mixing over a low-medium heat till it comes to a boil and thickens.
2 onions chopped, 2 cloves of garlic crushed,750grams of fresh spinach, 300grams ricotta, 200grams feta (crumbled/chopped)
Fry the onions in some olive oil till soft and golden, add the garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Wash the spinach by placing it in a colander and pouring boiled water over it causing it to wilt. Drain out as much water as possible,I squeeze the water out with my hands by squishing the spinach up before chopping it into the onions. Mix into the onions and add the ricotta and feta. Add a pinch of grated nutmeg. Combine completely.
Spread the tomato sauce over the base of your dish, fill the cannelloni tubes. I find the best way to fill the tubes is with a piping bag, quick and mess free. Cover completely with the bechamel sauce. Bake at 180degrees for 45mins (or until golden brown and bubbling).
Serve with crusty ciabatta.