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Monday, April 2, 2007

Cannelloni filled with Spinach and Bechamel sauce

100 grams butter, white flour, 1 litre milk, salt & pepper, nutmeg, grated cheese (mozzarela or parmesan, 500 grams shredded spinach (frozen or fresh), a box Cannelloni pasta (250 grams).

medium sized saucepan, Pyrex baking dish

1. On a small flame, melt butter in a saucepan and gradually add flour, a little at a time until all the melted butter is absorbed and the mixture becomes a little flaky, stirring continuosly with a wooden spoon.

Start adding milk, a little at a time, while stirring. Do not allow chunks to form. Continue adding milk untill the batter turns into a smooth and thick sauce. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste; remove from heat. 100 grams of butter will require nearly one litre of milk.

2. Take about one third of the Bechamel and put to one side, we will use it to cover the Cannelloni. Make sure to have enough sauce to cover them completely. It is recommended to add some more milk to this batch, to help cook the pasta better.

3. Add the spinach to the Bechamel and stir. If it's too runny to stay in the cannelloni gradually add some flour while stirring.

4. Fill Cannelloni tubes and place in a greased oven-safe dish.

5. Pour the Bechamel on top of the Cannelloni and spread evenly. Sprinkle the grated cheese to taste.

6. Cover the dish with tinfoil and place in a hot oven (250 celsius) for 30 minutes. remove the tinfoil and leave in the oven for 30 more minutes at 180 degrees celsius.

Serve hot.

Recommended drink: Chilled white wine.