Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Stuffed Manicotti

Stuffed Manicotti
This is a standby family favorite. I have served it many times, and I often find it is well received by Omnivores who don't have tofu as an everyday part of their diets.

Stuffed Manicotti
1 diced Onion (or 1/2 of a 12oz bag of Frozen Chopped Onion)
1 to 2 teaspoons Minced Garlic

Casserole Dish lined with thin layer of Spaghetti Sauce.
1 (10 to 12 ounce) package frozen, chopped spinach (thawed and drained and squeezed dry)
1 (14 to 16 ounce) package firm tofu, mashed with fork (I prefer the refrigerated kind in plastic tubs to the aseptically packaged varieties)
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
½ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon Pepper
*Optional Mushrooms may be added, if desired
Above spinach mixture
Use mixture to fill one package UNCOOKED
Manicotti Shells, about 11-14 shells.
Place some
Spaghetti Sauce (store bought or home made)*
Tofu and Spinach Filling
in the bottom of an oiled casserole (the one you will use for baking).
Top with filled Manicotti Shells. COMPLETELY COVER SHELLS in Spaghetti Sauce. Cover casserole. Casserole may be frozen or baked at this point.  

Before baking, thaw 24 hours in refrigerator.

On baking day, COVER thawed casserole and bake for 45 to 60 minutes at 350degrees Fahrenheit, until heated through, and pasta is cooked.

(I use Glad Press & Seal for Freezing, as it is much more airtight than foil. But, I use foil for baking.)

Casserole Ready to Freeze or Bake.

Filled Manicotti Shells
*Spaghetti Sauce should be fairly thin for this recipe. If yours is very thick, you should thin it with water, till it resembles the normal store bought sauce consistency.
**Oil may be used for sauteing, but is not necessary. I usually omit it.

If desired, Bread crumbs may be sauteed in buttery spread (such as Earth Balance) with garlic salt to top casserole after baking. This adds eye-appeal and texture as well as flavour.

Serve with Garlic Bread or Toast and Salad.

Tip for Dining with Omnivores: This look-alike, super-easy to prepare Cheese Manicotti may be served alongside. (I'm indebted to this website for the no-boil method for my Manicotti dish : ) Alternately, Grilled Chicken may be served along side.

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  1. I use tofu in Italian dishes, too. I can't eat very much dairy, so I substitute mashed tofu, flavored with lemon juice, salt, and minced garlic for cheeses like ricotta, in lasagna. I like to mix in a bit of chopped kale and shredded carrots, too. My family can have cheese, so I top their portion with Parmesan, and leave mine without.

    I also make my own individual pizza (when the family is having pizza), topped with my mashed and flavored tofu, then mixed with just a smidge of mozzarella cheese, to get something resembling melt-y. But I bet it would be good without the cheese added. I don't know about you, but I don't care much for soy cheese. It's flavorless and gummy. Just my opinion.

  2. This is right up my alley! I have been looking for vegan stuffing for these babies! Thanks!

    Swing by my place when you have a chance :)

    LOTS going on over there lately :) Salads, Sprouts, Restaurant Finds, etc!

    1. Thanks, Jennifer - glad you like it : )

      I'm subscribed to your blog! It's a good place to find fresh new ideas.

    2. Thanks so much you are wonderful :)
      I just saw your comment and replied :)
      Also...thanks for the link :)

  3. Thanks for your comments, Lili- I'm with you on the fake cheese thing. Even if they tasted great, they tend to be highly processed and high fat. I'm quite happy eating no cheese of any kind (and there was a time when I thought that would be impossible!)

    Welcome : )


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