Another great recipe my mother brought me when she came to visit the new baby was a big batch of Ina Garten’s Italian Wedding Soup. She knew I’d be in the mood for nutritious meals with lean protein and great flavor that weren’t too heavy. Of all the soups and wonderful meals people have been bringing us this has definitely been one of our favorites. Since I have all of Ina’s cookbooks I quickly looked it up and marked it for making again later this winter. It comes together easily and definitely provides the terrific nourishment we all need to stay healthy and happy this winter.
Italian Wedding Soup
1/2 pound chicken sausage, casings removed
2/3 cup fresh white bread crumbs
2 teaspoons minced garlic cloves
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
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
1 medium yellow onion, finey chopped
3 carrots, peeled and cut into ¼ inch pieces
2 stalks celery, cut into ¾ inch pieces
10 cups low-sodium chicken stock
½ cup dry white wine
1 cup small pasta like pastina or little tubes
1 large handful baby spinach, washed and coarsely chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. To make the meatballs: Combine the ground chicken, sausages, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, Pecorino, Parmesan, milk, egg, a large pinch of kosher salt, and a large pinch of freshly cracked black pepper in a bowl. Mash everything together with a fork and then use your hands to roll the mixture into 1 ¼-inch size meatballs. Line the meatballs about 1 inch apart on a lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, or until cooked through and lightly browned.
3. To make the soup, in a large pot heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the onion, carrots, and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Then add the chicken stock and white wine and bring everything to a boil.
4. Pour in the pasta and cook for another 5 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked through. Then add the meatballs and spinach and cook until the spinach is wilted. Taste for seasonings and add some extra salt and pepper as needed. Serve!
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