Saturday, August 31, 2013

Crock Pot Italian Wedding Soup with Turkey Meatballs


I have the best dog of all time. After spending hours yesterday creating this amazing soup, I went to store it in the refrigerator and missed the shelf completely, letting go of the container so that it hit the floor and exploded everywhere. An entire quart of chicken stock and turkey meatballs spilled in growing puddles all over the kitchen floor and all I could do was watch. My neighborhood was stunned into silence at the expletives issuing from my apartment. Even Eric and Mia, who witnessed the whole disaster, had no words.

My chicken loving Chihuahua stood there in shock, as the scent of warm chicken stock filled the air. Even minutes later, once all the shock was past, I was in tears, and Eric began consoling, Mia continued to stand there, just watching, being the best dog that there ever was. It's possible she could sense how sad her mommy was (though I doubt it). The more likely reason was the training we've just started helped her "stay" for the treat until she was given the command. Though, there was definitely some confusion and intuition there. I imagine what was going on in her little brain was something like: "Mom just went crazy over this chicken stuff, she's really stressed out and I want to please her by being a good girl. I'm going to stay and then she'll give me chicken." She was so good that after I cleaned up the bulk of the mess, she got to clean up the rest.

Honestly this was one of my worst food fails ever. I could care less about spilt milk--I made each and every single one of those tiny turkey meatballs by hand. I drove to the store for the sole purpose of buying little star shaped noodles. And it was about 80 degrees in my kitchen. It was such a stupid clumsy accident that I can really only blame it on the fact I had changed into my glasses very early this particular evening, as I was having irritation in one of my eyes. My glasses are a whole prescription higher than my contacts and I can't see out of them nearly as well. I've been putting off buying new lenses for two years and I really need to get new ones. This was the last straw.

Poor mom. Poor meatball soup. It really was delicious! At least I was able to take a few pictures before it went on the floor. I even enjoyed a couple small bowls. I will definitely make it again, and I hope someone else will, too!

Ingredients:

1/4 lb ground turkey
1 egg
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
1/3 cup parmesan cheese (or nondairy alternative)
1/8 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon Italian seasoning

2 cups unsalted chicken stock
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup fresh baby spinach, packed
1/4 cup tiny uncooked noodles
fresh parsley, coarsely chopped

Directions:

1. To make the meatballs, combine turkey, egg, breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, parsley, salt and pepper, and Italian seasoning in a small bowl. Mix with your hands until all ingredients are well blended.


2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a medium size casserole dish with cooking oil. Using a tablespoon to scoop, shape mixture into bite size mini meatballs and place in casserole dish. They can be close together but not touching. Cook for 15 minutes.




3. While meatballs are cooking, prepare your broth in the crock pot. Add chicken stock, onion, carrot, garlic powder, and salt and pepper. Save the greens and noodles for later.

4. When the meatballs are done, add them to the chicken broth in the crock pot. Cook on high for two-three hours. During the last 10-15 minutes of cooking, add noodles and stir. Set a kitchen timer to help. When there are three minutes left, add the spinach and stir. Once the timer goes off, remove from heat. Serve topped with parmesan cheese and parsley. Don't spill.