I haven't been daring enough to try many new recipes lately with the limited time I have to cook, but decided I'd try today. This ended up being a winner and not even very difficult. The sauce tastes really good and is slightly different from the usual. I didn't use quite as much spinach as it calls for since I was afraid the kids wouldn't eat it, but Alex and Elisa loved it. Sabrina wanted nothing to do with the green stuff. I originally got this recipe from Jonna at Just Get Off Your Butt and Bake, but I couldn't find it there anymore. (But go check out her other delish food!) I had a little extra filling so I'm using it tomorrow with some cheese for a quesadilla.
1 (10-oz.) pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed
6 oz. cooked, diced chicken breast
3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1 c. chicken broth
1/2 c. milk
3 (8-oz.) cans tomato sauce
1 t. dried basil
1 t. dried oregano
3/4 t. garlic powder
3/4 t. brown sugar
6 uncooked manicotti shells
1 1/2 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Divide spinach in half; refrigerate one portion for another use. Squeeze the remaining spinach until dry; place in a small bowl. Add chicken; set aside. In a large saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour until smooth; gradually add broth and milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in the tomato sauce, basil, oregano, garlic powder and brown sugar; cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes or until heated through. Meanwhile, stuff 1/4 cup chicken mixture into each uncooked manicotti shell. Spread 1/2 cup sauce into a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish. Arrange manicotti over sauce; top with remaining sauce. Cover and bake at 350° for 40-45 minutes or until bubbly. Uncover; sprinkle with cheese. Bake 8-10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.