Spinach & ricotta cannelloni

Serves 6

  • 400 g spinach

  • Extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 2 cloves of garlic, squashed

  • 2 X 400 g tins of tomatoes

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1/2 bunch of basil, leaves picked

  • grated zest of 1/2 lemon

  • 250 g ricotta

  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

  • 2 tsp grated parmesan

  • 150 g cannelloni, about 14 tubes

  • 2 x 125 g mozzarella balls, sliced

Recipe by Laura Fyfe



1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Put the spinach and a drizzle of olive oil in a large pan over a low heat. Add the nutmeg, season with salt and pepper, cover and leave to sweat. Help the kids to stir it occasionally until the spinach has cooked down. Place in a bowl and set to one side to cool a little.



2. In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil and gently sweat the onion until soft. Add the garlic, tomatoes, bay leaf, a few basil leaves and lemon zest and let it gently simmer for 20 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Season with salt and pepper.



3. Have the kids squeeze the moisture out of the spinach into the bowl. Place the spinach on a board so you can chop it up. Return the spinach to the liquid in the bowl and get the kids to stir in the ricotta, beaten egg and parmesan. Season to taste.



4. Sit the piping bag in a jug, fold its edges over the rim, then spoon in the spinach mixture. Have the kids help pipe the mixture into the cannelloni tubes and lay them in a 20cm x 25cm oven dish.



5. Spread the tomato sauce over the cannelloni. Scatter over most of the basil, lay the mozzarella slices on top, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and season. Place in the oven and cook for 35–40 minutes or till the top is golden and the pasta tender (if the top browns too fast, cover the dish with foil). Remove from the oven and let stand for a few minutes before serving with the remaining basil.

Nutritional Information

Spinach & ricotta cannelloni

A big, bold & easy pasta bake

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An impressive but simple pasta dish that kids will love to help you cook – the uncomplicated flavours will appeal to developing tastes
Serves 6
1h 30m
Super easy
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Method

Recipe by Laura Fyfe

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Put the spinach and a drizzle of olive oil in a large pan over a low heat. Add the nutmeg, season with salt and pepper, cover and leave to sweat. Help the kids to stir it occasionally until the spinach has cooked down. Place in a bowl and set to one side to cool a little.

2. In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil and gently sweat the onion until soft. Add the garlic, tomatoes, bay leaf, a few basil leaves and lemon zest and let it gently simmer for 20 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Have the kids squeeze the moisture out of the spinach into the bowl. Place the spinach on a board so you can chop it up. Return the spinach to the liquid in the bowl and get the kids to stir in the ricotta, beaten egg and parmesan. Season to taste.

4. Sit the piping bag in a jug, fold its edges over the rim, then spoon in the spinach mixture. Have the kids help pipe the mixture into the cannelloni tubes and lay them in a 20cm x 25cm oven dish.

5. Spread the tomato sauce over the cannelloni. Scatter over most of the basil, lay the mozzarella slices on top, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and season. Place in the oven and cook for 35–40 minutes or till the top is golden and the pasta tender (if the top browns too fast, cover the dish with foil). Remove from the oven and let stand for a few minutes before serving with the remaining basil.

Whether it's delicious vegetarian or vegan recipes you're after, or ideas for gluten or dairy-free dishes, you'll find plenty here to inspire you. For more info on how we classify our lifestyle recipes please read our special diets fact sheet, or or for more information on how to plan your meals please see our special diets guidance.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:

Calories

Calories are just a unit of energy. If you eat more than you use you can gain weight, or lose it if you don't eat enough. How much you need depends on your weight, gender and how active you are, but it's around 2,000 a day.

Carbs

Carbs are a great source of energy and, excluding foods such as potatoes, are made from grains - like bread, pasta and cereal. We all need carbs, but try to make them all wholegrain by sticking to brown bread, rice and pasta - they are much more nutritious.

Sugar

We all deserve a treat sometimes, but try to limit your sugar intake. Most of your sugar should come from raw fruit and milk, because they give us lots of nutrients too. Always check food labels so you know how much sugar you're eating.

Fat

We all need to eat a small amount of fat because it protects our organs and helps us grow. But we need to be careful about how much fat we eat and what kinds of fat, because in higher levels it's associated with weight gain, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Saturates

Saturated or "bad fats" are in beef, pork, chicken skin, butter, cream and cheese. Too much can be bad for our heart and cholesterol levels, but unsaturated or "good fats" in fish, nuts, avocados and some oils can help keep our hearts healthy if eaten in moderation.

Protein

Protein helps our muscles to grow and repair, as well as providing you with essential amino acids. When it comes to protein, try to eat leaner sources such as chicken and fish or non-meat sources such as eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, seeds, tofu and pulses.
  • Calories 386
    19%
  • Carbs 39.3g
    15%
  • Sugar 8.8g 10%
  • Fat 16.4g 23%
  • Saturates 8.9g 45%
  • Protein 21.2g 47%
Of an adult's reference intake

BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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  • 400 g spinach

  • Extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 2 cloves of garlic, squashed

  • 2 X 400 g tins of tomatoes

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1/2 bunch of basil, leaves picked

  • grated zest of 1/2 lemon

  • 250 g ricotta

  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

  • 2 tsp grated parmesan

  • 150 g cannelloni, about 14 tubes

  • 2 x 125 g mozzarella balls, sliced