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Spinach and Riccotta Cannelloni

ingredients

serves 4
1 lb (450 g) fresh spinach, stems removed and rinsed, or 8 oz (225 g) frozen, thawed, chopped and drained
275 g (10 oz) ricotta cheese
1 egg, size 2, beaten
1 tsp (5 ml) grated nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste
16 cannelloni tubes
two 400 g (14 oz) cans tomatoes
1 garlic clove, skinned and crushed
1 small onion, skinned and finely chopped
1 tsp (5 ml) dried mixed herbs
4 oz (100 g) mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
fresh basil sprigs, to garnish

method

1. Lightly oil an ovenproof dish and set aside.

2. If using fresh spinach, cook only in the water that clings to the leaves after rinsing, for 5 minutes. Drain well and coarsely chop.

3. Put the spinach, ricotta cheese, egg and nutmeg in a bowl, mix well and season. Fill the cannelloni tubes with the mixture. Arrange in a single layer in the prepared dish.

4. Roughly chop the tomatoes and add them with their juice, garlic, onion and herbs into a saucepan. Season, bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, until slightly thickened.

5. Puree in a blender or food processor and pour over the cannelloni. Cover with aluminium foil and cook at 200°C (400f) mark 6 for 35 minutes, until cannelloni is tender.

6. Remove the foil and arrange the cheese slices over the top. Return to the oven, cook for a further 10 minutes, until bubbling and golden, and serve.

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