SPOONFUL - Beef Canneloni

Pasta is probably the easiest and fastest dish to make.With the availability of prepared sauces and dried pasta in the market, preparing pasta dishes has always been a breeze You just boil it and add sauce, voila! You have a dish. But ever since I've tasted and learned how to make fresh pasta, I put in the effort of making it rather than using dried pasta. Of course, there are times I still use the dried version, but fresh pasta tastes really better than the store bought one. 

Canneloni means "large reeds" in Italian. It is cylindrical in shape and is usually filled with spinach and ricotta or beef. Canneloni is usually baked with filling, very much similar to a lasagna. The difference only is that a lasagna is layered while a canneloni is rolled.

This is not the first pasta recipe that I have shared. I shared a ravioli recipe before and I made that pasta for that too. I don't have a pasta maker and still use a rolling pin, which is just fine. You just have to make sure that you roll it even. Also, I used ingredients here that are easily available in the kitchen or that you wouldn't have a hard time looking for in the supermarket.

Anyway, here is my recipe for Beef Canneloni

200 g All purpose flour
2 eggs
5 ml Olive oil
1. Mix eggs with flour.
2. Add olive oil
3. Mix until dough forms
4. Add a little water if dough is too dry
5. When dough forms into a ball, let rest for 30 mins.
6. After resting, portion dough and roll into thin sheets
7. Cut dough into desired sheet size (about 15cmx10cm)
8. Let dry for a few minutes.
9. Boil in salted water until al dente. Set aside

Ground beef
Onion, diced
Garlic, minced
Salt and pepper
1. Saute onions and garlic in little oil
2. Add ground beef
3. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Set aside

Cheese sauce:
All purpose flour
Grated cheese
Salt and pepper
1.Make a blond roux with the butter and flour. 
2.When the flour is cooked add the milk.
3.Simmer and add the cheese. 
4.Stir constantly to avoid burning the cheese. 
5. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper.
6. Set aside

Tomato sauce:
bacon, diced
Onion diced
Chicken stock
Salt and pepper
1. Blanch tomatoes and peel. Dice and remove seeds
2.Render fat from bacon
3. Sweat onions in rendered fat
4. Add diced tomatoes
5. Add a little chicken stock, simmer
6. Add sugar to balance sweetness
7. Season with salt and pepper
8. Simmer until desired consistency. Set aside

1. Place cooked pasta in a baking dish
2. Spoon filling into one side and roll towards the other side.
3. Repeat until you have made about 3-4 rolls in a dish.
4. Cover rolled pasta with tomato sauce. 
5. Top with cheese sauce.
5. Bake in a 325 F oven for about 7 minutes or just until cheese bubbles and melts

1.You can use store-bough pasta sauce or tomato sauce for this if you think it's quite tasking to make. But I suggest making your own cheese sauce since I don't know of any good cheese sauce in the supermarket. 2.You can also experiment with the cheese to use. I used cheddar and mozzarella for this one
3. You can also vary the filling or add vegetables  in it. 

Happy cooking!