Cannelloni Florentina

Cannelloni Florentina

8 ozs. cannelloni pasta, about 10 tubes

8 ozs. ground veal

2 medium carrots, chopped

1/2 stalk celery, chopped

1/2 yellow onion, chopped

1 10 ounce bag fresh spinach, rinsed, dried, stems removed and chopped (may use 10 ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained)

1-1/4 teaspoons salt

1-1/4 teaspoons pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup dry white wine

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup finely chopped Roma tomatoes

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 teaspoons dry Italian herbs

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

fresh Tomato Sauce (recipe follows)

Cook cannelloni according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Preheat oven to 500° F. In a large baking dish, crumble veal and toss with carrots, celery, onion and spinach. Add salt, pepper, olive oil and wine. Mix well.

Place in hot oven and roast until veal is brown and vegetables are soft, about 30 to 40 minutes. If meat begins to smoke, lower oven temperature to 400° F. Stir often.

Cool 15 minutes. Place meat mixture in food processor and process until finely chopped. Add cream, Roma tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, dry herbs and basil. Stir and return to oven for approximately 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool until it can be handled, about 15 to 20 minutes. Stuff each cannelloni with 2 to 3 tablespoons of meat mixture. Place in clean baking dish.

Preheat oven to 350° F. Pour tomato sauce over cannelloni and bake for 20 minutes or until sauce is bubbly. Makes four to five servings.

Fresh Tomato Sauce: Place 1 (16-ounce) can Italian tomatoes and their juice in food processor and process until smooth. Set aside. Heat 2 tablespoons virgin olive oil over medium heat in a large saute pan. Add 2 cloves garlic, chopped fine, and 1 medium onion, chopped; cook until soft. Add tomatoes, 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper, and cook 5 to 10 minutes or until liquid is no longer watery. Add four chopped fresh basil leaves and cook 1 minute longer.

Serves 4.

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