Our best cannellonis

No exaggeration: sometimes you’re lucky and things go exactly as they should go. Pepper falls in the right proportions, you got that oil that is exquisite, basil from the garden was beautiful, perfect amount of pepper … it is easy when you have all that happen, but when you come to eat food prepared by other people for a long time, simple things or industrialized food (our case), you lose a little “smell of cooker.”

Anyway: this time things went perfect and that’s why we write here on the website to remember how to make the best cannelloni we had in our lives and maybe it will be useful to someone else.

(I hope this recipe is understandable, any doubt you can leave a comment below and we will solve the problem.)

Quantity: 12 cannelloni stuffed with spinach, for 4 adults

Prepare two salsas, one red and one white.

Working time / enjoyment: 2 hours approx.

Well, let’s start making pancakes or crepes as they are called in other parts of the world. Disks are cooked in a skillet over medium heat, based on flour, eggs, butter and milk.

Ingredients for pancakes or crepes:

2 eggs,

1 cup wheat flour,

1 cup milk or more

2 tablespoons melted butter,

a pinch of salt (but noticeable), some white pepper.

Preparation of the pancakes:

Mix ingredients in a way that there are no lumps. To do this, melt the butter and then add the rate of flour, mix well and only when it is homogeneous (no lumps), add the cup milk, 2 eggs, salt, pepper and stir until homogeneous.

Put the frying pan with some butter, just a bit to prevent sticking, and also because it gives them an amazing flavor: turn the pan so that the butter Sprinkle all the surface.

Ladle (such as that used to serve soup), pour some into the pan and turn while moving to cover the entire surface with a thin layer of the mixture: cook over medium heat, pay attention and when the edges turning brown (2 or 3 minutes), turn and cook another minute.

This whole process of cooking can vary: it can be done with high heat, but be more careful, or at least fire, but it takes too long. Additionally, you can make it thicker or thinner.

Well, once cooked, it piled on a plate or in any suitable container, between each cooking can add a little butter to the pan so you do not miss that nice flavor and prevent sticking. The idea is to make something like 10 or 12 cannelloni.

In the meantime, you can do any of the other parts of this meal: red sauce, stuffing, etc.., The white sauce should be the last, and comes hot and fit.

Stuffed and rolled

(Note: for a recent family dinner we prepared 36 cannelloni, tripling this recipe)

Ingredients for the filling: spinach, onions, salt, pepper, sugar, nutmeg, grated cheese

It’s simple: boil 800 grams of chard or spinach, without any salt (or anything else) in 2 liters of water; about the same time, will prepare a pan with one or two onions cut into pieces, add a little oil, salt, pepper, maybe some sugar and cooking until transparent, you can toast a bit and will stay with “coolest” (this may take 10 minutes over medium heat approx). Monitoring well to prevent burning, and stir occasionally.

When the spinach is boiled (3 to 5 minutes), drain (very important not to lose consistency) and mix with onion in skillet, add salt and pepper to taste, and add some nutmeg, can be 1 / 4 teaspoon or a little more (it will taste great). Add grated cheese to taste (do not spend because it do not have to prevail cheesy).

Go testing the filling to see if it lacks salt or pepper: CAUTION: it is a sacrilege to make a filling with little taste! Trying to make it savory without being exaggerated, must have a delicate flavor, but it should not go unnoticed.

Ok! the filling is ready. We have the pancakes and filling, we could even put them together, spreading the spinach in a pancake and tapping to form the cannelloni. Putting a layer that is neither too thick nor too thin to fill, if fill will be left with little and lose too languid grace, it is preferable that others have filled in all cases.

Well, we placed each pancake into an stainless steel oven (preferably rectangular, as seen in some photos) previously oiled with sunflower oil, or better yet with sunflower oil + olive mixture.

 

 

 

Sauces

The white sauce is fundamental for me in the ecosystem of the cannelloni :-D I can not conceive without it, but who does not like can only eat red sauce. Without sauces would be too dry and humorless.

Red sauce

The while we prepare the filling or pancakes … is advisable since the sauces are good simmer.

Ingredients: 1 onion, 1/3 red sweet pepper (or calahorra ) or more, 250 g of tomato paste, basil, salt, pepper, sugar.

Chop an onion, as we did with the stuffing, brown them in oil and water, add sugar to remove the acidity, salt and pepper. Chop 1/3 red sweet pepper (also called pimento, pepper) or more, it is very important to have a good amount of chili sauce to taste prevails over the onion or 2 or 3 basil leaves to add later. Once the onions and peppers are cooked, add approx. 250 g of tomato puree. Cook over low heat with the pot covered for half an hour, stirring occasionally and adding some olive oil or sunflower oil at some point, and the leaves of albahaca. Go testing to see if the sauce needs more salt and / or pepper: it should be tasty and should feel the clear taste of the red sweet pepper.

Check that it does not burn, if necessary add some water. Then simply turn off the heat and leave covered to keep warm.

 

 

White Sauce

Ingredients: 50 g butter, 2 tablespoons flour, 1 cup milk, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, salt, pepper.

It always seemed complicated, but it is not at all, is a “matter of faith,” especially when you waiting thickened, but otherwise is very simple. What you have to do is similar to the mass of the pancake:

You put 50 grams of butter to simmer, withdraw from the heat when there is liquid and add 2 tablespoons of flour, mix well and then add 1 cup milk (250 ml), salt, pepper and 1/4 teaspoon of walnut nutmeg.

You take him over medium heat until thickened while moving it with a wooden spoon:  4 or 5 minutes, can be more. We must be patient and try to see if it needs more salt.

BAKED!

 

The cannelloni in the oven below, used to toast the white sauce with grated cheese. The flame of the oven warms up the cannelloni from the upper part.

(Those who are in the last picture not yet have the red sauce, but have been well gratin)

Cannelloni are baked with 2 purposes:

1,  heated to serving time

2, to gratin them if it is to our liking.

The idea is to place them next to each other in ovens (need 2 for 12 cannelloni), with enough oil to prevent sticking, and heat for a while to fire up the oven to heat them 7 minutes , we take them out ready to serve, and we can add spot white and red sauces, or let the guests like to do the same on his/her plate.

BUT: I recomend gratin, this would be: 7 minutes after heating in the normal oven, take them to the bottom of it (under the fire) but not before dumping all the white sauce over the 6 or 7 cannelloni entering a source and sprinkle with cheese. We monitor every 3 or 4 minutes that do not burn but that is toasted cheese and white sauce, the mass of the cannelloni can burn easily in that situation if it does not have any sauce.

Then remove from oven and put some red sauce on the white sauce with an aesthetic sense to make it nice to your view, you can decorate with a basil leaf, and eat!

Hope you like it, feel free to make variations on this recipe, as your taste and pleasure.

 

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