Its hard to find something not to like about stuffed shells, especially ones doused in roasted garlic cream sauce.
As for the success for this dish I have to say it's a tossup- the diners loved it but frankly the flavor of crab was actually a bit too overwhelming in my opinion.
Baked Crab Stuffed Shells
This is what I vaguely remember as a recipe- this is the problem that arises when I shoot photos and then don't make a post about until over 3 months later
SERVES ABOUT 8
for the filling
1 1/2 bell peppers, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 pound frozen chopped spinach, thawed and wrung dry
1 1/2-2 cups of ricotta cheese
1/2 cup of grated parmesan
1/4 cup of minced parlsey
1/4 cup of minced basil
1 lb lump crab meat
salt and pepper to taste
roasted garlic bechamel
6-7 garlic cloves
1/2 stick of butter
1/3 cup of flour
3 cups of whole milk
1 cup of cream
1 cup of chicken stock
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup of parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
1 pound of jumbo shells, parboiled (according to box's direction)
roasted garlic bechamel
To make the filling, in a saute pan over medium high heat, saute the bell pepper, and onion in some olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and after 5 minutes add the garlic and cook until the vegetables are softened. When tender, add the chopped spinach and boost the heat to high for a couple minutes to evaporate any of the excess water from the spinach. Let vegetable mixture cool completely
In a large bowl, combine together the vegetable mixture, ricotta, parmesan, herbs, and eggs. Gently fold in the crab meat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
For the bechamel, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the garlic cloves on a sheet of tin foil and drizzle liberally with olive oil. Wrap into a package and roast for 45 minutes or until the garlic is brown and tender.
In a saucepan heat up the milk, cream, and chicken stock.
In a separate saucepan melt the butter, and add the flour to form a roux. Slowly add in the hot milk mixture one ladle at a time, whisking constantly. Add the nutmeg. Cook on medium high heat until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add the roasted garlic cloves and puree with an immersion blender. Season with the salt and pepper and stir in the parmesan cheese.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
To assemble, ladle some of the bechamel on the bottom of your baking dish. Stuff each shell with the crab mixture and line the pan. Pour the remaining bechamel on top, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for twenty to thirty minutes until the top is golden brown and bubbly. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before serving.