Conchiglioni Rigati Stuffed with a Ragu Bolognese

Conchiglioni Rigati are large pasta shells, which I think look lovely. Each shell stuffed with a rich meat sauce that's been slowly cooked with red wine with tomatoes and other good things. Topped with a white sauce and finished with a good amount of Parmesan cheese is delish and well worth the fairly long cooking time.


This recipe will serve 6 or 4 quite greedy people
Printable Recipe

You will need:
One large or two medium sized ovenproof dishes
400g Conchiglioni Rigati pasta (large pasta shells)
200g Parmesan, freshly grated

For the Meat Sauce:
2 onions
1 carrot
1 stick celery
4 fat cloves of garlic
80g of either smoked streaky bacon or pancetta
1 tablespoon tomato puree
5 or 6 sun dried tomatoes drained from their oil (or re hydrated dried ones)
30g butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
250g minced beef
250g minced pork
1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes – including the juice
160ml red wine
3 bay leaves

For the Béchamel sauce:
100g butter
70g plain flour
560ml milk
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
freshly grated nutmeg

How to do it:
Peel the onions and carrots and chop into big cubes. Do the same with the celery. Peel the garlic cloves and put them all including the bacon into a food processor and finely chop to almost a paste.
Don’t bother washing the processor up just yet – hold up on that as you’ll need it again in a minute!
Heat the butter and oil in a large pan and fry this mixture along with the tomato puree over a low heat and cook for about 10 minutes or until soft.
Now add the beef and pork and stir it about a bit until it browns evenly.
While this is cooking nicely add the sun dried tomatoes to the food processor and give them a good whizz up so you end up with a tomato paste.
Add this paste to the meat. Give everything a good stir.
Add the tomatoes, red wine and bay leaves. Stir well and bring to the boil.
Now turn down the heat and cover with a bit of kitchen foil or a lid but only partially cover.
Let this mixture cook for about on a low heat for about 1 and half hours stirring now and then. It shouldn't go dry unless you have the heat too high.
If it does you will need to add a teeny bit more wine or water if you must.

For the Sauce:
Melt the butter in a saucepan then add the flour and stir and cook together. Take off the heat briefly, and whisk in the milk with a hand held balloon whisk.
Now put back on the heat stirring all the time.
Once the sauce is bubbling leave it for a few minutes to cook stirring all the while.
Season with salt and pepper and turn down the heat and cook until slightly thickened.
You want a fairly running sauce. When that’s done remove from the heat and stir in some freshly grated nutmeg.
Preheat your oven to 200C/400F/ Gas 6
Put a large pan of slightly salted water on to boil ready for your pasta. When it’s boiling add the pasta shells. Cook them until they are almost done (al dente). You don’t want soggy pasta.

Drain the pasta shells and let them cool at bit.
One at a time, fill each shell with a good spoonful of the meat sauce (bay leaves removed) and place meat side up and side by side in your baking dish.
Keep going until you've no room left in your dish or dishes if you your making two lots.
Now pour the white sauce over and in between the shells. Sprinkle the top generously with grated Parmesan – you can mix in some grated cheddar too if you fancy.
Cover loosely with foil and cook for about 25 minutes - if you let the sauce get cold before you made this then it will of course take a bit longer to heat through.
Now remove the foil and cook for another 10 minutes until it’s cooked through, piping hot and the top is bubbling, golden and crispy.

12 comments

  1. Looking good Jan, very good!

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  2. Definitely looks so delicious!

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  3. I'd say this definitely looks worht the wait.

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  4. It's good mood food! Have you been learning Italian long?

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  5. So this is the tasty conchiglioni that you were talking about! Looks great Jan! Ship some over to the US :)

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  6. I love stuffed pasta dishes like these but because I only cook for one, I don't make them :(

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  7. hi, i have chosen you in the the tag A to Z for your great blog and delicious recipes! :) come visit my entry and spread the tag on your site! :) cheers!

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  8. That pasta looks and sounds so tasty!

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  9. Another winner Jan, simple, fortifying and mighty nice to look at...Thanks for sharing...

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  10. A meat sauce with red wine and a white Béchamel sauce and both can be tasted with a single bite...what a meal!

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  11. I'm usually not one for baked pasta dishes, but with that ragu and melty cheese, this looks irresistible.

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  12. Liking this dish Jan - very much!

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Thanks for taking the time to comment - much appreciated.
Cheers
Jan




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