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Spinach-Ricotta Manicotti

Prepare crepe shells:

3 eggs
1 c water
1 c flour
1/8 t salt

Beat the eggs and add the water.  Mix in the flour and salt until well blended.  Strain batter to remove lumps.  Allow batter to rest while preparing the filling and the sauce.

To prepare crepes.  Heat an 8” coated omelette/frying pan brush with butter or olive oil.  Heat the pan, a drop of batter will sizzle if placed in the pan.

Using a scant ¼ cup of batter hold the pan and twirl as you are pouring in the batter so that it will coat the bottom of the pan completely and the crepe will be very thin.  Use a little extra batter if necessary.

The crepe will cook/dry quickly; loosen the edges, lift and turn to cook on the other side for up to 10 seconds. Repeat with the remaining batter, buttering the pan after every other crepe. Crepes can be layered between sheets of wax or parchment until you are ready to fill.

To fill, drop about 2 T filling across the center of each crepe, roll the crepe and place seam side down in a 13×9 pan that has a coating of sauce in the bottom.  Crepes can be snuggled close together 8-10 across the pan.  Top with extra sauce.  Bake covered with foil for 40-50 minutes at 350.

Remove from the oven, take the foil off of the pan and allow the dish to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Serve with extra sauce and grated cheese.

Spinach-Ricotta filling:

1 lb spinach, blanched, cooled, squeezed, and chopped
32 oz.  ricotta
2 eggs
2 T chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
salt, pepper to taste

Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir just until incorporated.

Simple tomato sauce:

Olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can crushed tomatoes
salt and pepper to taste

Sauté the garlic and onion in the oil until soft not brown.  Add the tomatoes and a little water or broth. Simmer until reduced, about 15 minutes.   Season with the salt and pepper and some fresh basil.



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