Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The winner of tonight's mystery meat contest is Jeffrey Corbin who guessed "some kind of beef"

I spent a week with my sister after my nephew was born helping her around the house. It was so much fun for me to get to spend time with my newborn nephew, but it also gave me a chance to hang out with my sister and pick up some great recipes.

Just before he was born, she made about 20 different kinds of soup and froze them so that she would have easy to grab food around. Cooking is not really a first priority with a newborn in the house. One of the soups we ate a few times that week was Rachel Ray's Mini Meatball Soup. It is super delicious and healthy. I've made it a few times since and I love it.

With all the rain we've been having lately, I thought I'd whip up a batch for me and Alex to have for dinner.

Mini Meatball Soup (by Rachel Ray from The Food Network)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan in a slow stream
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves, fresh or dried
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ground beef, pork and veal combined
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano, a couple of handfuls
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs, a couple of handfuls
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg
  • 6 cups chicken stock or broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried pasta
  • 1 pound triple washed fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
  1. In a deep pot over medium heat add oil, chopped carrots, celery and onions and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Cover pot and cook veggies 5 or 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. While the veggies cook, combine meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, nutmeg in a mixing bowl.
  3. Uncover your soup pot and add broth and water to the pot. Increase heat to high and bring soup to a boil.
  4. When soup boils, reduce heat a bit and start to roll meat mixture into small balls, dropping them straight into the pot. You are making meat dumplings that will cook in the broth.
  5. When you are done rolling the meat, add pasta to the soup and stir.
  6. Cover and simmer soup 10 minutes. When pasta is tender, stir in chopped spinach in batches.
  7. When spinach has wilted into the soup, the soup is done and ready to serve.

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