The student news site of Roncalli High School

Roncalli Media

The student news site of Roncalli High School

Roncalli Media

The student news site of Roncalli High School

Roncalli Media

Recipes and reflection

How the Roncalli Cafeteria prepares for meatless days during Lent and what recipes you could try

Fridays during Lent are often a time when many people struggle with what to eat for dinner. Most families just end up ordering a couple of cheese pizzas and calling it a night. For Mr. Jeff Richardson, Roncalli’s food service director, just ordering a couple of pizzas for lunch is not an option.

For a school that has around 860 students and faculty eating lunch every day, it takes a lot of hardwork and effort to effectively run a great cafeteria. The crew must make sure that their cuisine meets all requirements and that they are serving a healthy meal. During Lent that task gets a lot harder. 

“A lot of thought goes into our meal planning for Ash Wednesday and the Fridays during Lent. Because we can’t have meat, but we still need to meet the state of Indiana’s requirements for the National School Lunch Program, we have to make sure that we still have the appropriate grains and protein, which usually comes in either cheese, yogurt, or seafood,” Mr Richardson says.

Even though the task can be daunting, the Roncalli Cafeteria Crew does it all with a smile on their faces, even boasting an Instagram found at @roncallicafe. The lunch staff is always finding ways to take care of all lunch-goers’ needs while still providing delicious meals. 

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“With all of this in mind, we also want to make sure that we have enough options that everyone will enjoy on these days of fasting,” said Mr. Richardson.


And if you decide you want to test out your own chef skills on a Friday in Lent, try this vegetarian spin on sesame chicken. This recipe only takes about 25 minutes to prepare, makes around 4-6 servings, and is truly delicious. 

Keeping Lenten Promises:
A delicious and healthy alternative, sticky sesame cauliflower and salmon patties makes a perfect meal on Fridays in Lent.


  • 2 small cauliflower heads 
  • ⅔ cups low sodium soy sauce
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup 
  • ½ cup rice vinegar 
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic 
  • 3 tsp toasted sesame oil 
  • 1 tsp powdered ginger 
  • 3 Tbsp cornstarch
  • ½ cup water


  • Preheat your oven to 450 F. 
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  • Cut cauliflower into florets, then slice so one side of each floret is flat. Arrange in a single layer in the greased pan. Bake for 10 minutes on the top rack or if you want crispier pieces, bake for 15 . 
  • Meanwhile, mix the soy sauce, sweetener, vinegar, garlic, sesame oil, and ginger in a saucepan and bring to a boil. 
  • While waiting, stir together the cornstarch and water until cornstarch dissolves fully, then slowly whisk this into the saucepan as soon as it boils. 
  • Turn heat to medium and cook to desired thickness.
  • Flip cauliflower florets and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes based on desired crispiness. 
  • Fold the baked cauliflower into the saucepan ensuring an even spread of sauce. Sprinkle sesame seeds and optional scallions on top, and serve.




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