Easiest Manicotti Method Ever!
| January 31, 2013
In Kitchen Basics
Featured Recipe: Easiest Beef and Cheese Manicotti
Pat H. of Coppell, Texas and I have been talking about manicotti; specifically how to stuff it. I posted the question on my website and got lots of great ideas – everything from using a zipper top plastic bag and “squirting” the filling in to deliberately slicing the manicotti along the top and “sealing” the opening with cheese.
But my favorite answer comes from Ronald P. in Federal Way, Washington:
“Ladies this is not brain surgery. I owned and operated an Italian restaurant in Federal Way. I pre-cooked my regular pasta like spaghetti, and rigatoni, penne and kept them cold till I served them up for customer orders. However, with a stuffed pasta like manicotti you have to do things differently. Ladies, never, never, never, pre-cook your manicotti noodles ahead of time.”
Since then Pat and I have both tried stuffing the uncooked manicotti noodles and are very pleased with the results. Pat reports pre-stuffing is the easiest method she has yet to find.
Since this method does require the ricotta mixture to be “stiff” I decided to beef up my traditional cheese manicotti recipe with ground beef. I absolutely love the hearty filling paired with the al dente noodle of baking the raw manicotti noodles in sauce. No it’s not brain surgery, but I’m sure even brain surgeon like tips and tricks from other pro’s, so thank you Ronald!
Our Cookbooks rock!
What you're saying..
I started reading Desperation Dinners along about the time I became a "stay-at-home" mom (what an oxymoron!) and needed both intellectual stimulation and something different - ANYTHING different - for dinner.
In those early days, I cooked strictly by the rule book, no deviations. But over the years, you two have given me the confidence to try rotini instead of penne, to substitute, experiment, become confident. Thank you!!
Honestly - - all three of my DD books are stained, tattered, splattered, and loved. I've given DD as gifts to new moms, to new wives, and to young friends just out of college. Can't think of a more practical, useful present.
I appreciate all the recipes, but really like the bulk-cooking ideas.
Thanks for everything!!
-- Karen Gamble of Raleigh, NC
Have a question?
We hope you'll tell us, but we hope you'll ASK us, too! Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll try to find the answers.