How am I supposed to pass on making this pasta? It has several of my top ingredients, it's so easy to make, and it involves stuffing things into pasta. I could eat some variation of this several times a week. As always, the best dishes come about when I think I have nothing to cook, and when I start making dinner after assuming we'll just get take-out.
- 1/2 large sweet potato, cut once lengthwise
- Olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, sliced
- 1 jalapeno, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups frozen spinach
- 1.5 cups tomato-basil marinara
- Red pepper flakes
- Gorgonzola cheese
- 1 box jumbo pasta shells
Pre-heat your toaster oven (I am so glad I got this...as with everything, my mom was right when she said it would come in handy) to 400 degrees F. You could do this in a standard oven, but what's the point of heating up a giant oven when all you want to do is bake a measly half sweet potato?? There's no point. Just use a toaster oven. Anyway, season the sweet potato with freshly ground black pepper and olive oil and bake for 25 minutes. While this is baking, get the rest of your stuffing ready.
Cook pasta according to package instructions. Heat olive oil in a skillet and saute the onion and jalapenos. Next, add the garlic and stir until it becomes fragrant. Add the spinach and wait until it wilts. Pour in the pre-made tomato-basil marinara, add the red pepper flakes, and stir until everything comes to a simmer. Turn off the heat and add the gorgonzola cheese. Gorgonzola has a pretty strong flavor, so you don't need too much cheese to give the stuffing a robust taste. Sample it as you go and adjust the amount of cheese accordingly. Remove the sweet potato form the oven and scoop out the flesh. Stir this into the veggie/cheese mixture. Lastly, add salt. I usually add salt earlier in the process, but gorgonzola is salty already and you don't want to ruin the dish with giant amounts of NaCl.
Spoon the stuffing into the cooked jumbo shells and top with a little extra warmed marinara sauce.