Something really exciting happened this week! We’ve been stuck inside a ton lately because it’s been rainy and a sloppy, muddy, not very warm mess outside. Well, I spent like 60 hours inside my house painting like a crazy person, not stepping foot outside and lo and behold when I finally did emerge–I found it had changed to full on summer. Yay! I should note when I finally did step out into the light of day I did so looking like a slasher film victim, our paint is this deep maroonish red and dried on skin it looks a lot like blood. To my dismay, upon that first step onto the porch, I discovered I’d inadvertently been involved in a triple homicide, errr planticide. My poor porch flowers. They are all pretty much fried since I hadn’t realized how hot it had gotten. Whoops.
Also added to my really exciting happenings list for the week, the carpenters finished their work except for one ceiling (it isn’t finished because I haven’t ordered it yet, because it’s the one thing in this whole remodel that my hubs and I can’t agree on). But yeah, the carpenters and their mess are out. And the plumber finished with his work, so he is also gone. And this week was church camp so my big kids are gone, and my youngest went to stay with Grandma for a few days so I could paint.
I got to sleep in.
It was ahhmazing!
There’s still quite a bit of work to do on the house, painting woodwork, cleaning, deciding what is going to be put back and what needs to be sold/donated/trashed. So I don’t have before and after pics just yet. But for the most part, the majority of the work is done and I can tell you I love it, especially my kitchen. Here’s a little sneak peek.
Many moons ago one of my most favorite readers, (shout out to you Miss K!) asked me if I could post a pasta recipe. Disclaimer: If you have a problem with store-bought marinara sauce I suggest you stop reading right here. Someday I might take the leap to homemade marinara sauce, but I don’t have an Italian grandmother rolling over in her grave because of my penchant towards Prego, so today’s not that day. Mmkay? Mmkay.
The manicotti recipe that I am sharing with you today is one of our family favorites. It’s one of the handful of recipes that I have that everyone in my house loves. I never ever hear complaints about this one or have any leftovers from it, which is interesting to me because it’s a meatless dish. My three cheese manicotti is one of those dishes that turns into a delicious, melted cheesy mess in the best way possible. Full of cottage cheese, mozzarella, parmesan cheese, eggs and garlic, it’s got the goodies to make you say yum. It makes a batch big enough for a ginormous 9×13 pan packed to the brim. Add a salad and some bread sticks and you’ve got dinner. Don’t you love things that come together so easily? I know I do.
I tried something different with the photography when I was making this manicotti. It was the first time back really cooking in my new and improved kitchen. I wanted to see how the lighting was and how everything really looked with the changes in place, so these photos of this manicotti are all done without any kind of photo props or staging. They are completely 100% from my kitchen to yours. What you see is what you get. Mere seconds after I took this photo I sat down and polished this plate off and then another and another. You get the point.
Three Cheese Manicotti
- 8 ounce box manicotti shells
- 24 ounce jar of pasta sauce
- 1 lb 8oz container cottage cheese
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 1/2 cups shredded parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat a large pot of water to boiling and boil the manicotti shells for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, mix together the cottage cheese, eggs, garlic, basil, 1 cup parmesan cheese, and 2 cups of mozzarella cheese.
- In a 9x13 greased baking dish, spread a little less than half of the pasta sauce. Using a spoon, fill each manicotti shell. Arrange the manicotti in the baking dish and cover with the remaining sauce. Take care to ensure that all of the manicotti shells have sauce on them so they don't get dried out while baking.
- Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove the foil and sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of mozzarella and 1/2 cup parmesan over the top. Return to the oven and bake an additional 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.