Friday, February 6, 2009

Something Warm and Comforting for Dinner

I've been persuaded by several friends to share some of my recipes on this blog.  It's nice to know they actually do like my food and aren't just humoring me when I invite them over for dinner.  The first recipe I'd like to share with you is extremely easy and always turns out tasting delicious (even if I'm missing ingredients).  It's adapted from one in an old issue of Gourmet Magazine.  In my house we call this Turkey Meatball Soup but I'm sure Gourmet called it something a little nicer like Escarole Soup with Orzo and Turkey Meatballs.  Whatever you call it, this is perfect comfort food for this horribly cold winter we've been having.   So here goes the ingredients list.  I'm not always great at measuring but perfection need not apply with this soup.     

Turkey Meatball Soup

For the meatballs: 
1lb. ground turkey 
2 garlic gloves finely minced (or mashed if you have a pressed)
4 tbsp. of chopped parsley (more/less, we like a lot of parsley in our meatballs)
1 egg
2 tbsp. water
1/4 c. grated parmesan
1/4 c. bread crumbs  

For the soup: 
64 oz. of chicken broth (or 58 oz. if I have 4 cans instead of 2 large cartons)
32 oz. of water (for a richer soup use less water/more broth) 
1 onion chopped fine 
1 c. chopped carrots 
1/2 - 1 whole head of escarole cut into 1/2 inch strips 
1/2 c. orzo
1 tsp. dried herbs such as rosemary or thyme (optional, sometimes I forget this ingredient)  

To prepare the meatballs: 
Whisk the egg and water together and add bread crumbs and parmesan.  Once the bread crumbs have soaked up the liquid add rest of ingredients and get you hands messy mixing it all up.   

To make small uniform meatballs I use a small cookie scoop.  Line all of the meatballs on a cookie sheet and store in the fridge while you prepare the soup.  This chilling time helps the meatballs set up. 

For the soup: 
In a large heavy stockpot, heat the olive oil.  Cook onion and rosemary until onions are softened. Add carrots, stir to coat with oil and cook about 1 minute.  Add broth, water and orzo to the pot; simmer for 10 minutes.  Add meatballs to the soup and cook for about 8 minutes.  And escarole and cook for about 5 minutes.  We don't mind if the escarole still has a little crunch along the mid-rib but if would like it softer just cook a few minutes longer.      

Sprinkle with some grated parmesan if you please and serve with crusty bread.  I guarantee you will enjoy this dinner and it's easy enough to prepare during the week.  It makes a nice big pot so you will have plenty of leftovers for lunch or dinner another night.  


  1. This looks so tasty and seems perfect for the frigid temperatures we're experiencing. Will have to try it.

  2. YUUUUUUUUUUUUM. Gonna have to try this.

  3. I promise you it's delicious and extremely easy.