This is my second “breakfast pasta” recipe. Have I well and truly gone past the brink of insanity and fallen into the madness below? If so, it’s awfully delicious down there.
This breakfast was simultaneously messy and fun to eat. I don’t know how, but I ended up with chocolate on my nose.
As you might be able to see from the pictures, the filling isn’t very, uh, solid. But you’re going to have to trust me on this one – that’s what makes it good! Since I didn’t want to overwhelm the pasta with sauce, it’s the gooey texture of the filling makes it moist and delicious. And messy. But hey, I think the best pasta is messy – if you haven’t gotten sauce on your clothes (or nose), you’re not doing it right
I’ve given some suggestions for mix-ins/decorations for the shells, but you can really add in anything that you think will work well. I ate five shells (even though only four are in the pictures), and mixed-in/decorated them like this:
- Cinnamon filling, walnuts, raisins
- Cinnamon filling, chocolate chips, candied cherries
- Chocolate filling, chocolate chips, walnuts
- Chocolate fillings, sprinkles
Which brings me to a very annoying issue – how much pasta is one “supposed” to eat? This question has plagued me ever since I first tried cooking pasta, and I don’t think anyone really knows the answer. Five shells was less than the recommended serving size on my packet of conchiglioni, but the serving sizes differ greatly depending on which brand you buy. Ugh, this is too confusing for me. It’s too difficult, so let’s just not think about it and move on.
Even if you’re skeptical, I think everyone needs to try sweet pasta at least once in their life. Don’t tell me you’re not tempted, or at least intrigued.
- For the pasta and fillings:
- 4 - 5 conchiglioni (jumbo pasta shells)
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons milk
- 1 teaspoon chocolate-hazelnut spread (such as Nutella)
- ⅓ cup ricotta cheese (low-fat or regular)
- 2 tablespoons yogurt
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Mix-ins/Decorations: Chocolate chips, walnuts, raisins, candied (glacé) cherries and sprinkles
For the raspberry sauce:
- ⅓ cup frozen raspberries, thawed
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon yogurt
- For the pasta and fillings: Cook the conchiglioni in lightly salted boiling water until al dente (generally, this is about 10 - 12 minutes). Drain, and place the shells face down on some paper towel. Cool completely – these can be stored in the fridge for a day or so.
- In a small bowl (or container), use a fork to dissolve the cocoa powder in the milk. Incorporate the chocolate-hazelnut spread.
- In another larger bowl, mix together the ricotta and yogurt until relatively smooth (i.e. no large lumps). Mix in the maple syrup and vanilla extract.
- Transfer approximately half of the ricotta mixture into the chocolate bowl. Mix well, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and store in the fridge overnight (or at least for a few hours).
- Stir the cinnamon into the remaining non-chocolaty half of the ricotta mixture. Cover this bowl with plastic wrap, and store in the fridge overnight (or for a few hours).
- When everything has chilled, stir your desired mix-ins into the fillings, and decorate the shells with sprinkles, more mix-ins, etc. Don’t add too much filling into each, or it really will go everywhere!
- For the raspberry sauce: Once the raspberries have thawed, use a fork to pass them through a fine mesh strainer. Discard the pulp that’s left in the strainer, and mix the maple syrup into the juice.
- Mix in the yogurt just before serving. Serve the stuffed shells with the raspberry sauce. Enjoy!