Refreshingly different Cannelloni recipe for the vegetarian moments in life

This recipe was lying somewhere hidden under my enormous pile of cooking related paperwork which is kept handy in a large drawer in my kitchen. I modified it a bit and played around with the ingredients (it came from an American website and was a bit heavy on the prefab sauces and condiments). As mentioned before, I am staying away from meat at present, and this dish certainly compensated me gratuitously for my voluntary vegetarianism.

As a starter for four or a main course for two discerning noders you'll need:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Chop away and prepare all the ingredients so you have them handy when you need them. Pour the tomatoes in a casserole with a generous dollop of olive oil and add basil, oregano and rosemary. Let the mixture simmer until the tomatoes are soft and you have an almost sauce-like consistency. In the meantime pour some olive oil in a pan and add zucchini, onions and garlic and let them fry gently until the onions and the zucchini are soft and the onions are golden. After giving the onions and zucchini a chance to cool, add half of the parmesan, a bit of pepper and salt, and half of the cottage cheese in a bowl and stir gently until well mixed. Now stuff the cannelloni tightly with this mixture while trying not to break them.

Now for the final act: Prepare a lasagne dish and pour half of the tomato sauce into the bowl and spread evenly. Lay your cannelloni gently on the sauce and pour the rest of the tomato mix over the cannelloni. Now sprinkle the rest of the cottage cheese over the little masterpiece and cover with the remaining parmesan.

Bake for 15 minutes while doing the dishes and laying the table. Remove the dish from the oven when the cheeses are lovely and golden. Serve with a salad of your choice (maybe Rocket?) and pour your guests a refreshing Italian red, like a Valpolicello. You can of course splash out a bit and surprise your guests with one of the rather upmarket and unbelievably light and fruity Central Otago Pinot Noir's, like Sam Neill's Two Paddocks or Roger Donaldson's Sleeping Dogs.


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