And who better to help us in the comfort food department than the glorious Ina Garten? Her recipe for this spinach and ricotta noodle pudding can be enjoyed in a large bowl on its own, alongside a tasty piece of chicken or fish, or really however you want to devour it.
It’s best steaming and gooey from the cheese, but you can also eat it cold (like I do because I get too impatient to heat things up!)
SPINACH AND RICOTTA NOODLE PUDDING
12 ounces wide egg noodles
4 tablespoons (good) olive oil, divided
2 cups chopped yellow onions
¾ cup sliced scallions, white and green parts
1 cup fresh whole-milk ricotta
4 cups half and half
5 large eggs
¼ cup fresh minced dill
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese, divided
Ground black pepper
1 (9-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 13x10x2-inch 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 sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onions, and sauté over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned. Add the scallions and cook for another 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. Add in the onion mixture and noodles and pour into the prepared dish.
- In a small bowl, combine the panko, the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and the remaining 2 tablespoons 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 another 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 (or cold for leftovers!)