This week's recipe is perfect for a snowy afternoon. Italian Wedding soup can be made with a variety of ingredients but usually has a base of meatballs, pasta and escarole, a bitter leafy green. If you can't find escarole, try substituting with kale, spinach or another bitter green.
2 medium-size heads escarole, washed well and cut into 1/2 inch slices
1/2 cup orzo or pastine (acini de pepe)
Grated Parmesan cheese to serve
In a large pot, bring chicken broth to a boil. Meanwhile make the meatballs, chop the carrot and wash, slice and drain the escarole.
In a medium bowl, combine meat, egg, bread crumbs, 1 Tbsp. Parmesan, basil and onion. Meat should be a little more "wet" than dry. Mix well. Roll meat into 1/2 inch (or smaller) balls and set on a plate.
Add meatballs slowly to the chicken broth, stirring occasionally so they don't stick together. Cook for about 5 minutes. Add the carrot, then escarole and lower to a slow boil.
When escarole is limp, add the orzo. Cook for about 10 minutes until the orzo is tender.
Note: Make the meatballs by pinching off small pieces. This is the time consuming part, the rest is a breeze. Esther said great pride was taken in making them very small! Wet hands make rolling them easier. TIP: Escarole is sandy. Make sure you wash well, drain and shake off excess water.
It's been snowing and cold here all week so I decided to make this soup. I used 12 chicken boullion cubes and 12 cups water in a crockpot and a large can of turnip greens since I was too lazy to leave the house to buy escarole and it turned out great!
I even added some zucchini cut small to get more veggies in us! This is a keeper!