<p>Everyone has its good and bad days. But when we are at our lowest, we most definitely need all the comfort and relaxation we can get. Comfort food is one of those positive things that can bring a smile on our faces. We played around with the ingredients a bit and the result was very very satisfying. Creamy mascarpone with light asparagus and zucchini + a kick of spicy sausage that gives the whole dish a full character. Definitely our go to cannelloni dish.</p>
Cut the sausage and asparagus (woody ends cut off) into small cubes 1x1 cm / 0.4 x 0.4 inch. Slice zucchini in half lengthwise. Scoop out any large seeds. Grate zucchini with grater, using the side with the largest holes.
Place a frying pan over a medium high heat, put in the cubes of spicy sausage so they get lightly golden. Transfer to a small plate. Place the pan back on the heat, add the asparagus, fry for a minute, then add the grated zucchini, fry for about 3 minutes on medium high heat. Set aside and let it cool a bit. Preheat the oven to 200°C / 395°F.
Don't throw away the oil that the sausages release, rather use it while frying the vegetables, that way you get even more flavour.
In a bowl combine mascarpone or ricotta and an egg yolk, using a spatula. Add the spicy sausage, asparagus and zucchini. Grate a bit of nutmeg in the mixture. Also season to taste with salt and pepper.
Cream the mascarpone or ricotta at the side of the bowl and soften it a bit, this helps to get the cream more soft and creamy.
It is important that the sausage and vegetables are not too warm, because otherwise, you will get a runny filling. If this happens anyway, put the mixture in the refrigerator for about half an hour and then use it.
filling the cannelloni tubes and baking
Fill a piping bag with the mixture. Squeeze the mixture gently into the cannelloni tubes, so that each one is filled equally. Drizzle the baking dish with a bit of olive oil and lay cannelloni tubes in line. Pour over the tomato passata, sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and fresh basil. Lower the oven temperature to 190°C / 375°F and bake for 40 minutes. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, then serve.
You can make a piping bag at home easily.Use a small plastic food bag. Place the filling into the plastic bag, squeeze all the air out, seal it well and cut off the very tip of one corner.