Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Italian Wedding Soup

This soup got a two-thumbs up from Jud.  It makes a huge pot of soup, but I may end-up freezing some of it to take to Randel, Juanita, and Anthony when baby E is born at the end of April.  I would put this at the top of my soup list for 2011. It comes from Barefoot Contessa - Back to Basics

Printable Recipe:

For the meatballs:
3/4 pound ground chicken
1/2 pound chicken sausage, casings removed
2/3 cup fresh white bread crumbs
2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus extra for serving
3 tablespoons milk
1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Soup:
2 tablespoons good olive oil
1 cup minced yellow onion
1 cup diced carrots (3 carrots), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
3/4 cup diced celery (2 stalks), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
10 cups homemade chicken stock (I used stock in a box)
1/2 cup dry white wine (I didn't have any at the time, so didn't use it.) You didn't think I would go to the grocery store for 1/2 cup of white wine
1 cup small pasta such as tubetini or stars (I probably used 2 cups of salad macaroni)
1/4 cup minced fresh dill ( I used 1 teaspoon dried)
12 oz baby spinach, wash and trimmed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For the meatballs, place the ground chicken, sausage, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, Pecorino, Parmesan, milk, egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a bowl and combine gently with a fork. With a teaspoon, drop 1" meatballs onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. (You should have about 40 meatballs. They don't have to be perfectly round.)  Bake 30 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned. Set aside.

In the meantime, for the soup, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and celery. Saute until softened, 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook for 6-8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the fresh dill and then the meatballs. Simmer 1 minute. Adjust seasonings. Stir in the fresh spinach. Cook until spinach is wilted, 1 min.  Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with extra Parmesan cheese.

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