Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Uninspired (recipe: Italian Wedding Soup)

I must have overdosed on the cooking in December, because I have not felt any urge or complusion to do any cooking since the holidays. This week, Phil made spaghetti for dinner on Monday (I work late), then last night he made breakfast for dinner (I have no excuse) and tonight, we're having Italian Wedding Soup at CJ's request. A boring week, to say the least, and I didn't plan or shop for any other meals, so who knows what Thursday and Friday will bring.

Normally, looking through cooking magazines, checking out my favorite blogs and thinking about trying new things is all it takes to get me excited to be in the kitchen. But, even those things are not doing the trick. I need something to get me out of this slump.

But, while I'm here, at least we'll eat something good tonight. We LOVE this Italian Wedding Soup and have it often. Its inspiration was the Mama's Italian Wedding Soup on, recommending to me by my friend Heather. Feel free to visit the link for the original recipe. We've made some changes, so I'll post the recipe as we like it. It's incredibly versatile, so feel free to play around.

I should also note that this is one of CJ's favorite meals and was what he requested for his birthday dinner.

Italian Wedding Soup
1 pound extra-lean ground beef
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried basil
3 tablespoons minced onion
2 1/2 quarts chicken broth
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup ditalini pasta
1 - 1 1/2 cups diced carrots
2 cups spinah, roughly chopped

In a medium bowl, combine the beef, egg, bread crumbs, cheese, basil and onion. Shape mixture into 3/4-inch balls and set aside. (Make the meatballs as small as you have the patience for). Brown meatballs in a large skillet.

In a large stockpot heat chicken broth to boiling; stir in the pasta, carrots and diced tomatoes. Return to boil; reduce heat to medium. Cook, stirring frequently, at a slow boil for 5 minutes or so. Add meatballs. Continue cooking until pasta is al dente. Add spinach just before serving and allow to wilt. (I have at times just added the spinach to the bottom of our bowls...I have a fear of slimy spinach in the leftovers). Serve hot with Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.

NOTE: If you prefer your soups thick and creamy, this one's not for you. It's a lighter, broth-based soup. Perhaps it will be just the thing to get me out of my cooking funk.

Italian Wedding Soup

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