Halloween cannelloni zombie families
- 1 packet cannelloni pasta tubes
For the tomato sauce:
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 4 cups spinach leaves, stems removed, roughly chopped
- 500g fresh ricotta
- 100g parmesan cheese, finely grated, plus extra for sprinkling before baking
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
For the white sauce:
- 50g butter
- 3 tbsp plain flour
- 2 1/2 cups (625ml) milk, warm
- freshly grated nutmeg
- 50g cheese, cubed
- 1 small carrot, cut into rounds
- olive slices
Step 1. Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) .
Step 2. For the tomato sauce, heat the olive oil in a saucepan on medium-low heat, add the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Add the tomatoes, increase heat to medium and cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes.
Step 3. For the filling, combine all ingredients in a large bowl and gently mix. Set aside.
Step 4. For the white sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring continuously, until it becomes grainy. Add a ladleful of warm milk and whisk to combine. Gradually add the remaining milk, whisking constantly until it becomes a lovely thick sauce. Once the milk is all added, cook for five minutes, stirring so no lumps form. Remove from heat, grate in the nutmeg and set aside.
Step 5. Meanwhile, cook the cannelloni according to packet instructions. Drain, then gently fill each tube with the ricotta mixture.
Step 6. Place filled cannelloni in individual baking tins as we have, or in one large baking tray. Cover with white sauce then spoon a ‘blanket edge’ of tomato sauce at the top of the cannelloni tubes (see picture). Sprinkle with extra parmesan cheese then place in the oven for 15 minutes, or until cheese is golden and bubbling on top.
Step 7. Decorate with cheese ‘hair’ (see notes), sliced carrots, olives or anthing else your imagination can conjure up.
- For the cheese ‘hair’, place a cube of cheddar or tasty cheese in a garlic press and squeeze into long strands. Set aside until you have about half a cup full then use this to decorate as soon as the cannelloni comes out of the oven.
- Swap the spinach with peas, if preferred.
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- This recipe was created by Sophie Hansen for Kidspot, New Zealand's best recipe finder: You can follow Sophie on Local is Lovely, Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest.