Friday, January 10, 2014

Winter Meal: Italian Wedding Soup

It's cold here.  I know it's winter and all that, but it's freakishly cold.  Like, don't go outside cold.  So other than me going to work, J, the cat and I have been hiding out in our family room here on the mountain in front of the gas fireplace. 
Last night, the cat didn't even wait for the family room to cool off  like she normally she does.  She followed me up to bed, and snuggled down between J and I so she was completely wrapped in the duvet that she'd pulled off of me.  A fool she is not.
And what does cold weather call for?  Warm, steamy meals that are easy, tasty, and that make leftovers that we can eat for lunch the next day or two.
This is a recipe from Rachel Ray.  I'm not huge on her recipes, but this one is a winner that I've made for a long time from one of her 30 Minute Meals cookbooks.  She lies, though...this takes 45 minutes or so.  But no matter.  Make this.  It's delicious.
I present to you now Rachel Ray's Meatball and Macaroni Soup:

2 Tbsp Oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 lb ground beef
1 egg, beaten
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c shredded parmesan cheese
1/2 c plain bread crumbs
1/2 tsp nutmeg
4 c chicken broth
2 c water
1-1/2 c macaroni
4 cups fresh baby spinach

1.  Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.  Add carrots and onion, and cook covered, stirring occasionally until softened.
2.  While the vegetables cook, combine meat, egg, garlic, cheese, crumbs and nutmeg to form mixture for the meatballs.  Add broth and water to vegetables, cover and bring to a boil.
3.  When broth comes to a boil, form meat mixture into balls and drop into simmering soup.  As soon as all the meatballs are in the soup, add pasta and cook 10 minutes, until done.
4.  As soon as the pasta is tender, add baby spinach and stir to wilt.
From Rachael Ray's 30-Minute Meals 2

I had some leftover red onion from another day, so I tossed in that too. 
 I used Panko crumbs this time because I had them in the cupboard.  I don't recommend them.  The meatballs were "fluffier" than usual.  They just felt different when I rolled them, and a couple of them broke apart in the soup.  Not that it really mattered, but regular fresh bread crumbs are best.
So you make the meatballs and they cook along with the macaroni...
And you add the spinach and the soup is done.  So yummy.
Add a small, freshly baked loaf of pesto bread and you've got a meal.  The house smelled so good as this all cooked.
But we're here to talk about the soup.  It's good.  Make it soon.

1 comment:

  1. So lovely post on Italian wedding soup! My sister will have British-Italian wedding quite soon so I will definitely suggest this soup to add in her wedding party menu. They will have a cozy indoor winter wedding at some popular venues in Atlanta. So excited for her day.