Spanakopita

“Surprisingly addicting and reheats well. A great dish when you need to bring a vegetarian dish somewhere.” – April Ferre

Spanakopita

Course: Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Greek, Mediterranean

Ingredients

  • 1 Pound Phyllo Pastry
  • 3/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil Divided
  • 2 Pounds Fresh Spinach
  • 6 Spring Onions Chopped
  • 1 Leek White and Light Green Parts, Chopped
  • 1 Medium Red Onion Finely Chopped
  • 3/4 Cup Fresh Dill Minced
  • 3/4 Pound Feta Cheese Crumbled
  • 3 Eggs Beaten
  • Salt and Pepper To Taste

Instructions

  • Heat 1/4 Cup Olive Oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onions and leek until translucent, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the spinach and sauté until the leaves have wilted and the liquid has cooked off, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool somewhat. When cool enough to handle, finely chop the spinach and place in a large bowl.
  • Preheat the over to 375 degrees. Lightly oil (always use olive oil) a 12 inch diameter or 9×13 inch metal baking pan.
  • Add dill and feta to spinach mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste (careful with the salt as the feta will add quite a bit of its own.) Pour the eggs over and give a stir to combine well.
  • Open up the phyllo pastry and place on work surface. Moisten a paper towel and cover dough to prevent it from drying out as you work. Layer the phyllo in the pan, brushing each phyllo layer generously with olive oil. Use half of the phyllo sheets to make the bottom pastry layer.
  • Put the spinach mixture in and press the top down gently to smooth filling. Add top layer of phyllo pastry, oiling between sheets as for bottom layer.
  • Using a sharp knife, score the upper layers of pastry into the size pieces you will want to serve once the pie is baked. Be careful not to cut through the bottom layer of pastry.
  • Bake the pie in the middle of the oven for 40 to 45 minutes until it is golden brown. Cool until just warm. Cut into serving sized pieces and serve either just warm or at room temperature.

2018 Recipe – April Ferre – from www.geniuskitchen.com

Sour Cream Enchiladas

“I went hunting for a recipe when my daughter, Laurie, was coming to dinner and bringing a vegetarian friend. I found this in one of my magazines.” – Jean Hansen

“This was my Mom’s standard dish if a vegetarian was coming to dinner, but it is equally good if you are a meat eater.” – Calla Ferre

“Not bad for being vegetarian. I modified this a bit when I tried it. I sautéed a small, chopped onion in some olive oil and added that to the tomato mixture in place of the green onions. I also thinned out the sour cream with some milk so it was easier to spread over the dish. I found that I could make and extra 8 enchiladas (minus the topping), so I cooked up the 8 as directed and then froze the other 8.” – April Ferre

Sour Cream Enchiladas

Course: Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Mexican

Ingredients

  • 1 Can (1 Pound) Stewed Tomatoes
  • 2-3 Tablespoons Salsa Jalapena
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Oregano Crumbled
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Thyme Crumbled
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Celery Seed Crushed
  • 1/2 Cup Green Onions Chopped
  • 8 Corn Tortillas
  • 3 Tablespoons Salad Oil
  • 3/4 Pound Monterey Jack Cheese Grated
  • 1 12- Ounce Can Corn
  • 1/2 Pound Sour Cream

Instructions

  • Mix tomatoes, salsa, thyme, oregano, celery seed, and 1/4 cup green onions.
  • Fry tortillas in oiled skillet until softened, turning once. Spoon 1/4 cup cheese onto center of each tortilla. Top with two tablespoons tomato mixture and 2 rounded tablespoons corn. Roll tortillas around filling and place in a large, shallow baking pan.
  • Mix sour cream and remaining green onion. Spoon over tortillas Top with remaining tomato mixture. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until heated through.

1987 Recipe – Jean Hansen

Eggplant Parmesan A’la Lemongello

“We were talking in the lab one day, wishing Julie a Happy Birthday and asking her what her plans were. She said she and her husband, Mike, and their son, Ben, were going out to dinner that night. She was hoping to get some good Eggplant Parmesan. Donna mentioned that she had a good recipe, and that she would make it for Julie’s dissertation signing party. Well, I jumped at the chance to get a good vegetarian recipe from a good cook, so I asked her for the recipe ahead of time! As it turned out, Donna decided to make this in addition to Ratatouille for Delandy’s going away party. It was the first time I had Eggplant Parmesan, and it was wonderful! I kept thinking about it all the next week.” – April Ferre

Eggplant Parmesan A’la Lemongello

Course: Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Italian

Ingredients

  • 1 Large Eggplant
  • 1 1/2 Quart Tomato Sauce
  • Mozzarella Cheese Grated
  • Parmesan Cheese Grated
  • Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/2 Cup + 1 Tablespoon Flour
  • 1 Cup Water

Instructions

  • Peel and thinly slice eggplant 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick.
  • Prepare tomato sauce from olive oil, tomatoes, onions, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Or buy prepared sauce.
  • In a shallow and wide bowl (wide enough to fit the eggplant slices horizontally) beat the 2 eggs, flour and water. Heat the oil in a skillet to medium heat (no smoke). Coat the eggplant slices in the egg mixture and sauté both sides until golden brown. This will take several rounds in the skillet to get all the slices sautéed, so just stack them up on a plate as they accumulate.
  • In a deep casserole dish place a thin layer of tomato sauce. Then make multiple layers of 1) eggplant, 2) tomato sauce 3) sprinkled Parmesan cheese, and 4) sprinkled mozzarella cheese, until all the eggplant is used.
  • Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes uncovered and 10 minutes covered with foil or casserole lid if available. Cool for 5-10 minutes, slice and serve hot.

2011 Recipe – Donna Lemongello – The Conforti/Lemongello Family Recipe

Olive Garden Fettuccine Alfredo

Fettuccine Alfredo is a classic Italian dish and a popular restaurant offering. Now you can recreate Olive Gardens famous version with this restaurant copycat recipe.

“I would love to find a really great Alfredo recipe, and to be honest, I’m still looking. What I do like about this recipe is that the taste is pretty good, but unlike most Alfredo sauces, this one does not separate when reheated, making leftovers possible. A very important consideration for a single person.” – April Ferre

Olive Garden Fettuccine Alfredo

Course: Main Courses – Pasta & RIce, Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Italian

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 Cup Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Cream Cheese
  • 3/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 8 Ounces Fettuccine Cooked and Drained
  • Salt and Pepper To Taste

Instructions

  • In a saucepan, combine heavy cream, butter, and cream cheese. Simmer until melted together.
  • Add the Parmesan cheese and garlic powder. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes over low heat.
  • Toss pasta with sauce, coating well. Leftovers freeze well.

2018 Recipe – April Ferre – from www.recipelion.com

Mom’s Lasagne

“I based this off of Kathy’s Jumbo Stuffed Shells. It is one of our family’s favorites, especially of my son Tom.” – Calla Ferre

“I’ve heard people say that lasagne is too hard to make. Not so! It’s quick to layer these ingredients, pop it in the oven and do those odds and ends around the house that you need to get done. The most common problem I’ve heard in making lasagne comes from people putting the dried lasagne noodles directly into the pan. Cook them first! Or buy no-bake noodles, but make sure you know which type you have. And make sure you get all the water out of the thawed spinach. Serve it with some garlic bread and a nice salad (try the Italian Bread Salad) for a fabulous Italian meal. Then try Pietro’s Tiramisu for an authentic end to the evening.” – April Ferre

Mom’s Lasagne

Course: Main Courses – Pasta & RIce, Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Italian

Ingredients

  • 2 Pounds (4 Cups) Cottage Cheese, Low Fat
  • 2 10- Ounce Package Frozen Spinach Cooked And Squeezed Dry In Towel
  • 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Cup Onion Chopped
  • 4 Eggs Lightly Beaten
  • 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1 Jar Marinara Sauce (Prego)
  • Cheddar Cheese & Jack Cheese Grated
  • Lasagne Noodles Cooked And Drained

Instructions

  • Combine first 6 ingredients. (This step can be done the night before, and excess water drained.)
  • Spread enough marinara sauce to cover bottom of 9×13 pan. Place layer of noodles to cover bottom of pan. Cover with half of cottage cheese mixture. Add some grated cheese. Now another layer of noodles, the rest of the cottage cheese mixture, more noodles. Top with some marinara sauce, and complete by adding good amount of cheese.
  • Bake at 350 degrees until cooked through and golden brown on top. Let rest 10 to 15 minutes.

Notes

If smaller amount is desired, halve recipe and bake in 8×8-inch pan. Also, No-Boil lasagne noodles are available in the grocery store for easy assembly.

2005 Original Recipe – Calla Ferre

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Kathy’s Jumbo Stuffed Shells

“Jim Serpa was one of Steve’s friends from the cement plant. His wife, Kathy, served these when we came over for dinner. This is what I based my Lasagne recipe on.” – Calla Ferre

Kathy’s Jumbo Stuffed Shells

Course: Main Courses – Pasta & RIce, Main Courses – Vegetarian
Cuisine: Italian

Ingredients

  • 1 Pound Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Pound Cottage Cheese Low Fat, Small Curd
  • 1 10- Ounce Package Frozen Spinach Cooked
  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Egg Beaten
  • 1 Jar (32-Oz) Marinara Sauce (Original – Not Ragu)
  • Jumbo Shells

Instructions

  • Cook shells as directed on package. Drain and rinse.
  • Mix first 5 ingredients and stuff shells.
  • Put 1/2 sauce in bottom of baking dish. Arrange stuffed shells in a single layer in dish. Place remaining marinara sauce over top and cover with foil.
  • Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes.

Recipe – Kathy Serpa

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Vegetable Pasta Casserole

“As I was preparing the 10th Anniversary Edition of this cookbook, I commented to my friend, Delandy, that my selection of vegetarian dishes was pretty pathetic. What can I can I say, we are carnivores. Anyway, she told me this recipe and I wrote it down to go in the cookbook. Very simple to make, and Delandy and her husband, Chris, both enjoy this.” – April Ferre

Vegetable Pasta Casserole

Course: Main Courses – Casseroles, Main Courses – Vegetarian

Ingredients

  • Assorted Fresh Vegetables Sliced Or Cubed
  • Fontina Cheese Grated
  • Parmesan Cheese Grated
  • Marinara Sauce
  • Pasta Cooked
  • Mozzarella Cheese Grated

Instructions

  • Bring together an assortment of fresh vegetables (zucchini, yellow squash, egg plant, mushrooms, tomatoes, onion, etc.) Cut into bite sized pieces.
  • Combine vegetables, fontina cheese, Parmesan cheese, marinara sauce, and cooked pasta (such as elbow or penne) in a casserole dish.
  • Top with mozzarella cheese and bake 30 minutes at 375 degrees until cheese is melted and golden.

Notes

Smoked cheeses work well in this dish.

Recipe – Delandy McConnell – From one of her neighbors in Sacramento

Hummus

“In graduate school, I came to really love Mediterranean food. My first standout experience with hummus was on a pita with lettuce, tomato, onion, and lettuce at the Whole Earth Festival in Davis. The Whole Earth Festival is primarily a craft fair, with music, and a focus on sustainability education. They are also an all vegetarian event. Those who know me know that I am most certainly a carnivore. Generally, vegetarian meals, while sometimes tasty, just don’t do it for me as a meal. But this hummus on pita was actually very satisfying. What I’ve found since then is that hummus is extremely variable when bought in the store. Some is bland; some way too spicy for my taste buds. My favorite place for hummus is Ikeda’s Produce Market, and this comes close to approximating it. Serve it with pita alone, or make it a sandwich like at the Whole Earth Festival. It is also good as a dip for vegetables or crackers or as a spread on sandwiches.” – April Ferre

Hummus

Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Mediterranean

Ingredients

  • 1 15 Ounce Can Garbanzo Beans Reserve Liquid
  • 1/4 Cup Tahini
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Juice Of 2 Lemons
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Paprika
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • Pine Nuts Toasted, For Garnish
  • Paprika For Garnish
  • Parsley Finely Chopped, For Garnish

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients in food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Adjust consistency of hummus with reserved garbanzo bean liquid as desired.
  • If tahini you are using makes the hummus a bit too bitter, add 1 Teaspoon Sugar to mellow the flavor out. Spices may also be adjusted to taste.
  • Garnish with toasted pine nuts, paprika, and parsley. Serve with pita, naan or other flat bread.

2013 Modified Recipe – April Ferre – From The Complete Book of Greek Cooking by Rena Salaman & Jan Cutler, 2005.

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