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Spring Minestrone With Chicken Meatballs

A lovely light soup. The meatballs really make it.

Ingredients

6 ounces ground chicken (about 3/4 cup)

1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs

6 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan, divided, plus more for garnish

4 garlic cloves, 2 minced, 2 thinly sliced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

1 large egg, whisked to blend

Kosher salt,

freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, sliced into 1/4" rounds

5 cups low-salt chicken broth

3/4 cup ditalini or other small pasta

1 cup 1/2" rounds peeled carrots

1 cup (packed) baby spinach

Chopped fresh basil

 

Instructions

Mix chicken, breadcrumbs, 3 tablespoons Parmesan, 2 minced garlic cloves, chives, egg, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Form into 1/2"-diameter meatballs (makes about 28).

Heat oil in a small pot over medium heat. Cook meatballs until golden all over, about 3 minutes (they will finish cooking in soup). Transfer to a plate; set aside.

Add leek to pot and cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add 2 thinly sliced garlic cloves; cook for 1 minute. Add broth and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Stir in pasta and carrots; simmer until pasta is almost al dente, about 8 minutes. Add meatballs; simmer until pasta is al dente, carrots are tender, and meatballs are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add spinach and remaining 3 tablespoons Parmesan; stir until spinach is wilted and Parmesan is melted. Season with salt and pepper.

Ladle soup into bowls. Garnish with chopped basil and Parmesan.

Makes 4 servings.

Total time 45 minutes.

Source: Epicurious

 

Per serving: 370 calories, 16 g fat, 3 g fiber