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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Italian Wedding Soup

Zach and I were lucky enough to attend the wedding of close friends over the weekend. The bride and groom are absolutely beautiful people, inside and out, and it was so lovely to celebrate with them and the rest of their friends and family.

With weddings on my brain, I thought of this great Italian Wedding Soup recipe and knew I had to share it with you. It's perfect for a Saturday or Sunday night when you would rather curl up at home instead of going out. The recipe takes about an hour and 15 minutes, but I promise it is worth it for the bowl of delicious hearty soup. 

Italian Wedding Soup

From Ina Gartern
8 servings

For the meatballs:
3/4 pound ground chicken
1/2 pound Italian chicken sausage, casings removed
2/3 cup fresh white bread crumbs
2 teaspoons minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons milk
1 extra large egg,  lightly beaten
1 teaspoon Kosher salt 
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

For the soup:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup diced carrots
3/4 cup diced celery
10 cups chicken stock (use low-sodium stock)
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup small pasta ( I used orzo, but tubetini or stars is more traditional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
12 ounces baby spinach, washed (I used red kale instead!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 

For the meatballs, place all the ingredients in a bowl and mash lightly with a fork. 
With a teaspoon, drop 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch meatballs onto a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake the meatballs for 30 minutes, until they are cooked thoroughly and lightly browned.
Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and sauté until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the chicken stock and wine, and then bring it to a boil. 

Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. 

Add the fresh dill and then the meatballs to the soup, and then simmer for one minute. 

Taste for salt and pepper, and then season the soup as necessary.
Stir in the fresh spinach and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach is just wilted. 

Ladle into bowls and garnish with Parmesan. 

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