Sue Belletieri's Manicotti and Sauce

Sue Belletieri's Manicotti and Sauce
Sue Belletieri's Manicotti and Sauce (Morning Call File Photo)


10 eggs


2 cups flour

2 cups milk

11/2 Tbsps. butter, melted

Thoroughly mix eggs, then stir in flour, milk and butter. Let the batter stand for 1 hour before cooking on a griddle.

Coat electric griddle with cooking spray. Set heat to 350 degrees. When the griddle is hot, spoon batter onto griddle and cook on each side until they're light golden and a little brown in spots. Crepes should measure about six inches in diameter and should be no more than 1/8-inch thick. Otherwise, they'll resemble pancakes, rather than the "shells" Sue uses for her manicotti.

Note: The recipe, already halved, makes about 30 shells. Freeze them, unfilled, for later use, if you don't need them all right away.

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1 No. 10 can (108 ozs.) whole peeled California tomatoes in water

2 Tbsps. garlic, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup olive oil

2 Tbsps. chopped olives

1 Tbsp. oregano

1/4 cup parsley flakes


1 tsp. (or more) crushed red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

Use your hands to crush the tomatoes in a large bowl. Tomato chunks should be bite-sized. Heat sauté pan and add oil, garlic, olives and seasonings. Sautee on medium heat until garlic softens, but do not let it brown. Add seasoning mixture to tomatoes. Heat to serve. Leftover sauce can be frozen or used for all kinds of dishes, including making shrimp or chicken marinara, providing a base for pasta fagiole or chicken cacciatore.

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1 3-lb. container whole milk ricotta cheese

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

3/4 tsp. black pepper

1 tsp. sugar

3/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 lbs. grated mozzarella cheese, divided between filling and for use as the topping for individual casseroles at baking time

Mix ricotta, nutmeg, black pepper, sugar and parsley. Fill each 6-inch crepe with about 2 tablespoons of filling and then top with a sprinkling of grated mozzarella before rolling the crepe.

To assemble the manicotti for baking:

Spoon enough marinara sauce co cover the bottom of each individual casserole dish. Then use three manicotti or more to fill the casserole dish. Spoon more marinara sauce over the top of the manicotti and then cover with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake in 350 degree-oven until the manicotti are heated through and mozzarella is melted and bubbly, about 12 to 15 minutes. Note: You will have leftover marinara sauce that will keep in the refrigerator for a few days. So, try any of the recipes below, or simply freeze the leftover sauce. If the sauce becomes a little watery, just cook it a little while longer to evaporate the moisture.

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Here are some quick recipes that have the marinara sauce at their heart. All but the Pasta Fagiole are designed to serve one. However, the Pasta Fagiole, a soup, will feed a crowd!


10, 16- to 25-count shrimp, cleaned and deveined

6 ozs. marinara sauce

Heat sauté pan over medium heat and add prepared marinara sauce or a jar of Louie's marinara sauce. Add shrimp and cook until shrimp are pink and firm. Serve over pasta or "as is."


1 boneless, skinless chicken breast

1 green pepper sliced

5 button mushrooms

1 Tbsp. red wine

6 ozs. marinara sauce

Cube chicken breast and dredge pieces in flour. Slice green pepper and mushrooms. Heat sauté pan with olive oil and sauté chicken pieces. Add green pepper and then mushrooms. Add marinara sauce and sauté until hot.


1 lb. ditalini, cooked

1 lb. great northern beans

1/4 cup grated Romano cheese

2 qts. marinara sauce

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Heat marinara sauce with one quart of water and then add beans and pasta. When the soup is hot, add Romano cheese just before serving.