July 21, 2011

Shells in a Pot.

They look like Sea Shells and come in two sizes, small and big - They are called Conchiglie and Conchiglioni i.e Jumbo Shells. And now that Ramadan is approaching and I am hoping you feed as many people as you can, I shall give you a simple, simple, recipe using Pasta Shells, the smaller ones. But first you will read my welcome note.

This what the pasta shells look like

In Iraq, we call them "kathee mathee". Don't ask me why, I don't know. But the way we cook them for convenience sake is very much like a Turkish dish made of stuffed meat raviolis with yogurt. So basically this is the easy quick version of it.

For 2-3 persons you will need the following :

- 250 grams of minced beef (I use lean)
- about 250 grams of pasta shells
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- about 1.1/2 tsp of mixed spices
- salt and pepper to your liking
- 1 flat teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1 cube of beef stock (optional)
- 1 tbs of olive oil
- 1 tbs of vegetable oil
- 2 small cans of yogurt
- 1 large clove of garlic.

Preparation :

finely chop onions and stir fry until brownish in vegetable oil, add your minced meat, and spices plus cinnamon plus a dash of salt and pepper, until the mix is well cooked.

Meanwhile in a saucepan

- fill saucepan with boiling water, add olive oil, and beef stock (optional) and your pasta shells until cooked to your liking. Strain.

- mix pasta shells with cooked minced beef, add a little of the pasta water to it so it will not dry and leave for a few minutes on a low fire.

- crush garlic in yogurt, mix well, add salt if necessary.

Serve hot with garlic/yogurt mix on side, latter will be used like a sauce on top of the pasta shells.

Bon Appétit.