The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Springy Shells

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Level: Easy

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Description

The quintessential chick dish: fresh green spring vegetables sauteed in butter and layered with pasta shells and cheese. This is a yummy springtime delight!

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces, weight Pasta Shells (medium) Or Other Short Pasta
  • 1 pound Asparagus, Cut Into 1 1/2 Inch Pieces, Discard Tough Pieces
  • ½ pounds Broccoli, Cut Into Small Florets
  • ½ pounds Zucchini (about 1 Medium Zucchini) Diced
  • ½ cups Frozen Peas
  • 3 whole Green Onions Sliced (white & Light Green Parts)
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 20 ounces, weight Ricotta Cheese (20 - 22 Ozs.)
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • 1-½ cup Parmesan Cheese
  • Black Pepper, Freshly Ground
  • Extra Olive Oil For Drizzling

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook pasta until extremely al dente—with still quite a bit of bite.

Melt butter with the olive oil over medium-low to medium heat, then add in the garlic. Add the asparagus to the pan and cook for five minutes. Sprinkle in a little salt.

Add the broccoli and cook for one minute, then add the zucchini and cook for one or two more minutes. Add the frozen peas, still together then turn off the heat. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta, eggs, salt, and pepper until well combined.

Assembly:

Butter a 9×13-inch baking dish. Add half the pasta, then spread 1/3 cup of the ricotta mixture over the surface. Sprinkle 1/3 of the Parmesan over the ricotta, then ½ of the vegetables. Repeat with the rest of the pasta, the rest of the ricotta, and another 1/3 of the Parmesan. End with the rest of the vegetables and the rest of the Parmesan.

Drizzle with a couple of tablespoons olive oil, then bake for 25 minutes on 350 degrees or until nice and hot.

Serve with extra Parmesan, crusty French bread, and chilled white wine. Yummy!

6 Comments

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sec1222 on 3.20.2011

Very easy dish to make–and it makes a lot too. I didn’t have enough ricotta so I mixed a couple of splashes of cream and some extra Parmesan in the ricotta mixture. Turned out wonderful with great flavor. Will definitely be made again, could be used as a side dish along side some grilled fish too.

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dulcinea47 on 5.16.2010

Super delicious! The large amount of veggies makes it a lot lighter than many baked pasta dishes. I used whole wheat pasta ’cause that’s what I normally eat and it worked just fine.

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hcsharp on 4.22.2010

i made this tonight for the fourth time … and it has gotten rave reviews every time! i love all the veggies and the creamy ricotta … yum.

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Oma Connie on 4.4.2010

Had this for Easter for Vegetarian guest. All like it a lot. Directions are sort of strange with different measurements then in recipe. Also not sure where to put green onions that were list as ingredients so I put them on top al0ng with some Parmesan cheese during the last of cooking time. I made night before and refrigerated….took almost hour to cook at 325.

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jeckert on 3.30.2010

This is a great spring recipe. It’s filling and light at the same time.
It doesn’t hurt that it’s so easy to make!

10 Reviews

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Kelly on 3.12.2012

Not my favorite Pioneer Woman pasta, but pretty good. I needed to add more salt.

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colemamma on 2.15.2012

This recipe is so good. I’m made it several times as stated and with other veggies that I happened to have on hand. I’ve used frozen veggies with no problems.

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Bonnie on 7.11.2011

This was so delicious! I put some chicken in it, but next time I’d just cook it separately [probably with some lemon marinade!] instead of putting it in the filling. The ricotta was a bit hard to spread, but I think the baking dish I used was way too big. Love it. Will definitely be making this often!

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terrilw on 5.24.2011

Loved this! My husband is a “meat man” but he declared this a keeper. I also was confused by the green onions, so I added them to the veggie mixture.

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sec1222 on 3.20.2011

This was so delicious! I didn’t miss the meat at all–although would be great used as a side dish with grilled shrimp or fish. It has great flavor and is a pretty dish to serve as well!

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