I love spinach and ricotta cannelloni but I find the ones typically served at restuarants are too rich for me. I decided to make my own using low-fat ricotta cheese as well as some chopped walnuts for some added texture. For a change, I also added mashed pumkin in the tomato sauce.
Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni with Pumpkin Tomato Sauce
8 instant dried cannelloni tubes
120g frozen spinach, cooked in the microwave
200g low-fat ricotta cheese
handful of chopped walnuts
freshly ground nutmeg
salt & pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small can of diced tomato
2 tbsp tomato paste
a pinch of dried herb (e.g. oregano, basil, sage)
250g butternut pumpkin, steamed
salt & pepper
1Preheat oven to 180°C. Lightly coat an ovenproof dish with olive oil .
The sauce: Sauté the garlic and onion in a little olive oil till golden and translucent. Add the can of tomatoes, tomato paste and herb. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Purée the sauce together with the cooked pumpkin till smooth and season. Set aside.
The filling: Place the ricotta in a large bowl. Use a fork to mash until smooth. Add the spinach, nutmeg (to taste), chopped walnuts and stir until well combined. Season with salt and pepper. Use a teaspoon to spoon the mixture evenly among the cannelloni tubes. Alternatively, spoon the ricotta mixture into a piping bag and pipe the mixture into the cannelloni tubes.
To assemble: Spoon half of the sauce over the base of the prepared dish. Arrange the cannelloni tubes, in a single layer, over the sauce. Spoon over the remaining sauce over the cannelloni tubes.
5Bake: Cover loosely with foil and bake in oven for 40 minutes or until the cannelloni is tender.