Welcome to 2022! Italian Wedding Soup was on the menu after seeing this recipe on one of my favorite blogs, IowaGirlEats. I had the ingredients on hand and needed to take a meal to my daughter after giving birth to my 5th grandbaby. Be careful that you don’t eat all for the tiny meatballs when they come out of the oven. They are delicious! Next time I would make a double or triple batch of the meatballs, so I would have them in the freezer when I want to make the soup. Serve with a hearty Italian bread.
Italian Wedding Soup
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 medium carrots, thinly sliced (~1 cup)
- 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced (~1 cup)
- 1 large shallot or small onion, chopped
- salt and pepper
- 10 cups chicken stock
- 1 parmesan cheese wedge rind (optional)
- 3/4 cup dry gluten free orzo
- 3oz fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
- 1 egg
- 2 Tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
- For the Pork Meatballs (makes ~75 meatballs):
- 1/2 cup small-torn pieces of soft gluten free white bread (crusts removed first)
- 1/4 cup finely grated onion + juices
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1 egg, whisked
- 2 cloves garlic, microplaned, pressed, or finely minced
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Pepper, to taste
- 1lb ground pork (I used Italian Sausage)
- For the Meatballs: Preheat oven to 400 degrees then line a half sheet pan with parchment paper or non stick sprayed foil. To a large bowl add torn bread and grated onion then mix to combine and let sit for 1 minute. Add parmesan cheese, egg, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper then stir to combine. Crumble ground pork over the top then use your hands to mix until just combined.
- Use a teaspoon to portion meatballs out then gently roll in your hands and place on prepared baking sheet – meatballs can be very close together but not touching. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Set meatballs aside – can be done a few days ahead of time.
- Meanwhile, heat extra virgin olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, and shallot/onion, season with salt and pepper, then saute until the vegetables are tender, 8-10 minutes. If the vegetables are taking too long to soften, I like to add a glug of extra chicken broth to the pot then place a lid on top and let them steam for a few minutes.
- Add chicken stock and parmesan cheese rind (if using) then turn heat up to high to bring liquid to a boil. Add pasta then turn heat down to medium-low and simmer until pasta is al dente, 20 minutes or so. Add cooked meatballs then stir to combine. Bring soup back up to a bubble (may need to turn heat up a touch) then add spinach and cook until wilted and tender, 2-3 minutes.
- Whisk egg and parmesan cheese together very well in a small dish. Give the soup a couple of big stirs to get the liquid swirling in one direction then slowly stream in egg mixture. Continue to stir to create small threads of egg (NOTE: the eggs are NOT curdled, they are COOKED – like egg drop soup!) Taste then add more salt and/or pepper if desired. Let soup sit and thicken for 10-15 minutes before removing parmesan cheese rind, scooping into bowls, and serving.
Recipe from Iowagirleats