soup for a rainy day: italian wedding soup
March comes in like a lion and out like lamb; April showers bring May flowers. Do you remember those old sayings from elementary school? Well, March came in like a lion and left like a lion and these April showers better bring some beautiful May flowers. This soup can help beat the grey days. Italian wedding soup is a poultry based broth soup that has tiny meatballs, tiny pasta and spinach. It’s the perfect soup to send those cloudy days away. This soup can be a little time-consuming to make, but I used some shortcuts to make it easier.
First, I used a combination of boxed broth and home-made stock. I made a lot of turkey stock after Christmas with the turkey carcass. Second, I already had mini-meatballs. I spent one evening a couple months back making meatballs in all sizes, then froze them all. Let me add that making these minis was not fun. I adapted the soup recipe from the Barefoot Contessa’s Back to Basics cookbook. It’s an incredibly easy recipe to throw together if you already have the meatballs ready to go. The only two things I left out of the original recipe were white wine because I didn’t want to open a bottle for only 1/4 cup, and the celery because I didn’t have any.
I had left-over soup for days. I intended to freeze the extra, but I loved it so much I just ate it day after day until it was gone. I didn’t use the measurements given in the recipe, so I’ll try my best to estimate what I used, but will link you to the actual recipe. If you’d like to give this recipe a try, but not bother making meatballs yourself, buy them and cut them into small pieces. I won’t tell.
Italian Wedding Soup
adapted from Barefoot Contessa
1/2-1 cup minced onion, yellow or white
2 garlic cloves, diced
2 carrots, diced
5 cups of chicken stock or broth, home made or bought
1/2 cup of tiny pasta (I used acini di pepe)
2 tbs fresh dill, minced
6 oz fresh spinach
tiny meatballs or regular meatballs cut-up, already cooked
salt and pepper
fresh parmesan, grated
Heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a soup pot and saute onions and carrots until softened then add the garlic, season with salt and pepper. Add the stock or broth and bring to a boil, add your tiny pasta and cook for about 8 minutes. Next add your cooked meatballs and dill. Taste your soup and season with more salt and pepper if needed. Add your spinach last and cook it until it’s just wilted. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with parmesan cheese.
In the words of Barefoot Contessa, “How easy is that?”