(Mass Appeal) – Fall and winter are a great time to enjoy a soup and there are so many you can choose from, like the creamy cauliflower we did earlier this week. Today, Danielle Formaro, author of ‘Add This to Your Plate: Mastering the Essentials in Cooking, Nutrition and Fitness,’ is sharing her meatball minestrone recipe with us today.
Meatball Minestrone Soup Ingredients
• 3 tbsp. avocado oil
• 1 large white onion (finely chopped)
• 2 carrots (chopped)
• 1 medium-sized zucchini (chopped)
• 1 stalk celery (chopped)
• 3 garlic cloves (minced)
• 1⁄2 tsp. salt
• 1⁄2 tsp. pepper
• 1 tbsp. fresh chopped oregano
• 1⁄4 tsp. ground dried thyme
• 1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes in
• 8 cups organic vegetable broth
• 1 (15 oz.) can white navy beans (drained & rinsed)
• 1 (15 oz.) can kidney beans or a small white bean like Navy Beans (drained & rinsed)
• 4 cups spinach (lightly packed)
• handful of fresh chopped basil (about 8-9 leaves)
• 1 cup whole-wheat medium shell pasta (dry)
• 1⁄4 cup fresh shaved Pecorino Romano cheese
1 pound ground ground meat of choice (I like meatloaf mix which is a blend of pork, beef, veal)
• 1 ½ cups fresh breadcrumbs (about a 2 slices whole grain bread, processed in food processor)
• 2 small garlic cloves (or 1 large), pressed through garlic press
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
• ½ teaspoon black pepper
• Pinch red pepper flakes
• 1 egg
• 2 tablespoons milk
– Begin by preparing your meatballs: add the meatloaf mixture to a large bowl, along with the remainder of the meatball ingredients, using your hands, mix the mixture until well combined.
– Portion out about ½ ounce meatballs, and roll; chill meatballs for about 15 minutes.
– Once the meatballs have chilled, place a large soup pot over medium-high heat, and drizzle in about 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil; once the oil is hot, add in about half of the meatballs, and brown them on all sides for about 3-4 minutes.
– Using a slotted spoon, remove the browned meatballs and then repeat with the remaining meatballs; set all of the browned meatballs aside for a moment.
- Into that same pot drizzle in a bit more oil if needed add onions, carrots, zucchini, and celery and cook until A little softened (about 2 minutes).
- Add garlic and cook for one minute.
- Add salt, pepper, oregano, and thyme and stir to combine ingredients.
- Add meatballs, tomatoes in juice, vegetable broth, beans, spinach, basil, and pasta to pot and raise heat to high until the soup comes to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, lower heat to low and simmer until pasta is cooked (about 10-15 minutes).
- Remove soup from heat. Last, add Pecorino Romano cheese. You may also season again with a little salt and pepper to taste if you feel it is needed.
- Serve immediately with a some freshly grated Pecorino Romano and some slice baguette.