Cannelloni is most frequently described as large pasta tubes, cooked and stuffed with a meat or cheese filling and then baked with a sauce. This delicious vegetarian variation is made by rolling crepes around a vegetable filling. I prefer this way of making cannelloni because it is much easier to wrap the crepes around the filling than to stuff it into the pasta tubes, and the texture is more delicate. I have included the recipes for both the white sauce and the crepes. However, if you have a favorite recipe of your own for either of them, by all means use it.
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
4cups (1 quart) nonfat milk, at the boiling point
1/4 teaspoon salt
1cup low-fat (1 percent) milk
3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1large onion, finely chopped, 2 cups
1cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
3/4 cup dry white wine
3cups white sauce
1/4 cup tomato sauce
1/4 cup non-fat milk
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
To make the crepes, combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until well mixed.
Heat a non-stick crepe or omelet pan until a drop of water will dance on the surface. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the batter into the hot pan and roll it from side to side to cover the entire surface.
When the edges curl away from the sides of the pan, turn the crepe over to lightly brown the other side. Place the cooked crepes in a covered dish as you make them to keep them warm and pliable.
Repeat until the batter is gone. Set aside.
To make the white sauce, melt the butter over low heat. Add the sifted flour and cook, stirring constantly for two full minutes, being careful not to brown the flour.
Remove from the heat and add the hot milk slowly, stirring constantly with a wire whisk.
Add the salt and return the sauce to low heat. Cook, uncovered, slowly, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes, or until it starts to lightly thicken. Cover tightly and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
To make the filling, cook the onions, covered, over very low heat for 5 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Add the celery, carrots and parsley and continue cooking, covered, for 10 more minutes or until the vegetables are fork-tender.
Add the salt, basil, oregano, white pepper, nutmeg and white wine and simmer, uncovered, until the wine is reduced by one-half.
Remove from the heat, add half of the white sauce and mix well.
Spoon 1/4 cup of the mixture down the center of each crepe and roll the crepe around it. Place the crepes, fold side down, in a baking dish.
Combine the remaining white sauce with the tomato sauce and milk. Mix well and spoon over the cannelloni. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the grated Parmesan cheese over the top of each cannelloni. Bake in the preheated oven for about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned. Makes 8 servings.
Each serving contains approximately 109 calories, 3 grams fat, 23 milligrams cholesterol, 496 milligrams sodium, 13 grams carbohydrates, 6 grams protein, 1 gram fiber.