Another Cold Day!! Another Pot of Soup!!

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So the other day while I was making my French Onion Soup, I also made a version of Minestrone.  My daughter and I love Italian Wedding Soup but I was out of frozen spinach and was using up what was in the fridge, so I came up with a hybrid of Wedding soup and Minestrone.  It is a very hearty soup with lots of good things in it to warm the cockles of your heart and stomach.

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Michele’s Meatball Minestrone Soup

Soup

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 onion finely chopped

3 carrots finely chopped

3 stalks celery finely chopped (didn’t have any)

5 cloves of garlic finely minced

6 cups chicken broth

1 large can of chopped tomatoes

1/2 cup white or red wine

1 large jar of tomato sauce

2 tsps dried oregano (or to taste)

1 tbsp dried basil (or to taste)

1 tsp dried thyme

2 bay leaves

1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes (more to taste)

2 cans kidney beans not drained (I used 1 white kidney bean and 1 red kidney bean)

1/2 dried Orzo

2 cups assorted chopped vegetables; sweet potato, butternut squash, zucchini, etc.

2 tsp salt

1 tsp ground fresh pepper

1 red pepper seeded and chopped

1 cup of fresh green beans chopped

2 cups chopped fresh spinach or kale (I didn’t have any so I left it out)

Meatballs (you could use Italian Sausage instead)

2 pounds ground meat (mixture of pork and beef preferred)

3 cloves minced garlic

1/4 cup grated parmesan

1 beaten egg

1/2 cup oatmeal and 1/2 cup milk mixed and left to sit for 15 minutes

1 tsp pepper

2 tsps dried basil

1 tsp dried oregano

1/4 tsp crushed fennel seeds

1 tsp smoked paprika

pinch of dried pepper flakes

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Mix ingredients for meatballs and set aside while making soup.  Heat a large Dutch oven over medium high heat and heat olive oil til hot.  Add onions and carrots and sauté til soft.

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Add garlic and sauté for 2 minutes more while stirring.  Add rest of ingredients except green beans, peppers and spinach or kale. Lower heat to medium. Allow to simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally, then drop the meatball mixture by tsps into the bubbling soup.  Lower heat to low and allow to cook for 10-15 minutes more until the meatballs are almost done.  Add green beans, and peppers and simmer 10 minutes more.  Add spinach or kale and finish 5 more minutes of cooking.  Taste and adjust seasonings.  You can simmer this longer to deepen the flavours or serve right away with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese on top and a salad and bread on the side.

Hope you enjoy another soup recipe.  Cheers, Michele