Staff Favorite – Italian Wedding Soup

                                                  
In addition to sharing a passion for all things office furniture, the gang at our office is equally enthusiastic about food.  We’ve hosted  “Thanksgiving in July” lunches, staged “Pasta Days,” and it’s not at all uncommon for team members to bring in newly tried recipes as well as old favorites.  One that we all look forward to is Italian Wedding Soup,  a perennial favorite that some of us enjoy year round.
                                                           

                                                                   
Italian Wedding Soup

Ingredients you’ll need:

One whole spring or roasting chicken (Size depends on the saucepan or stock pot you will be using.)
5 to 6 carrots – Cut in half  (As many as will fit in the same saucepan or stock pot) 
5 to 6 celery  stalks  – Cut in half  (Again as  space allows)
2 onions – Cut into halves or quarters
Onion powder
Garlic powder
Salt
1 10 oz. box frozen spinach, escarole, or greens – partially cooked and strained
1 box orzo,  pastina, or acini de pepe

For meatballs:

1 lb. ground turkey breast (Ground beef can be used, also.)
Bread crumbs
1 egg
Dried basil
Dried parsley flakes
Onion powder
Garlic powder
Parmesan cheese

Preparation:

Soup:

Wash chicken and place in stock pot or sauce pan.
Add enough water to cover the top of the chicken plus ½ inch.
Add carrots, celery, and onions.
Add onion powder, garlic powder and salt – About 2 tablespoon of each.

Cover and cook on medium heat until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are soft. Stir occasionally. This will take a few hours. When the legs start to separate from the body of the chicken, it’s done.

While chicken is cooking, prepare meatballs per the method that’s included below. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

Once chicken is cooked through, remove from pot and place on a platter. Using a colander, strain the remaining contents into another sauce pan. Return that pot to stove top. Discard cooked onions, celery and carrots.

Cut chicken into small pieces and return to saucepan with chicken broth.  Add spinach, escarole or greens and simmer on low to medium heat.  Add meatballs and cook for an additional hour on medium heat.

Meatballs:

In mixing bowl, season ground turkey breast  with onion and garlic powder (enough to cover surface)
Add liberal amount of parmesan cheese and bread crumbs
Add  2 tablespoons basil
Add 1 egg

Mix together and form into 1 inch balls.

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