Spinach & Ricotta Noodle Pudding (vegetarian)

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This recipe comes from Ina Garten’s cookbook “Make It Ahead”. The temperature here today did not rise out of the mid 20’s, so it was a perfect day for a hearty kugel. With today’s late lunch I served a 2010 Chateau Lagrange Les Tours, Grand Vin de Bordeaux. Enjoy!

 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 ounces wide egg noodles, such as David’s

4 Tbsp. good olive oil, divided

2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)

3/4 cups sliced scallions, white and green parts (4 scallions)

1 cup fresh whole-milk ricotta

4 cups half-and-half

5 extra large eggs

1/4 cup fresh minced dill

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1 (9 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted

1 cup panko (Japanese bread flakes)

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 13 x 10 x 2 inch oval baking dish.

Cook the noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, according to directions on the package. Drain and set aside.

In a medium (10 inch) saute pan, heat 2 Tbsps. of the olive oil, add the onions, and saute over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned. Add the scallions and cook for 2 minutes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, combine the ricotta, half-and-half, eggs, dill, 1 cup of Parmesan, 4 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Squeeze most, but not all, of the water out of the spinach and mix it into the ricotta mixture. Mix in the onion mixture and noodles and pour into the prepared dish.

In a small bowl, combine the panko, the remaining 2 Tbsp. of olive oil, and the remaining 2 Tbsp. of Parmesan. Sprinkle the mixture on the pudding. Place the dish in a roasting pan large enough to hold the baking dish and pour hot tap water halfway up the side of the dish. Bake for 45 minutes, remove the dish from the water bath, and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the top is golden brown and a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve hot.

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