Recipe by Star Pooley
"Coming from Rhode Island, a very ethnic state, this soup was traditionally served at Italian weddings. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese."
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extra-lean ground beef
egg, lightly beaten
dry bread crumbs
grated Parmesan cheese
5 3/4 cups
thinly sliced escarole
uncooked orzo pasta
finely chopped carrot
After reading everyone elses reviews this is what I did to make the best Italian wedding soup I've EVER tasted. First I used about 7 cups of broth. 6 cups of chicken broth, 1 can of beef broth. The beef broth DEFINITELY adds that extra punch this soup needs. Definitely only use 1/2 cup of orzo, and boil in a seperate pot. I threw some green onions in. With the 7 cups of broth, it was enough for 4 people, + 1 days leftovers, which you'll definitely want! Next time I'll bake the meatballs before hand to get some of the grease off.
I found this soup bland. Moreover, the amount of orzo the recipe asks for is excessive. If the soup is not eaten immediately the orzo absorbs all the liquid. The end result is anything but a soup.
My late grandmother came from the Old country, and I've used this recipe as a basis for replicating her recipe, but a few adjustments are critical.
First, the pasta must be cooked separately; otherwise, it thickens and ruins the soup. If you don't plan on leftovers, the pasta can be cooked in the soup, but you need to go easy on the amount of pasta. She always preferred alphabet pasta.
Second, she always used either ground turkey or chicken for the meatballs. Also, you need to take it easy on the spices in the meatballs because they can easily overpower the milder flavor of poultry. (By the way, why would anyone use ground beef in a chicken stock--it doesn't make sense, not to mention it isn't authentic.)
Third, she used celery in her recipe. I add a couple of stalks, finely diced. I also up the amount of carrots.
Finally, for an added touch, she always had hard-boiled eggs available for individuals to add, as they chose. It enriches the flavor and texture.
This recipe is very good--with these few tweaks. Thanks for sharing it.
I made a few changes to this recipe:
- Reduce pasta to 1/2 cup (You can use orzo, small shells, ditalini, orecchiette...)
- Brown meatballs in a little olive oil and drain before adding to soup. (Gives meatballs better color and flavor, and makes soup less greasy!)
- I increased carrots to 1/2 cup, and sauteed with 1/2 cup onion in a little olive oil to start. I always saute vegetables in soup pot first, before adding broth. (Again, better flavor.)
- I use spinach or escarole; both are yummy!
Excellent soup!! I made this last weekend for lunch, and it was so good that I had to have it for dinner too! I made a few minor adjustments to it. For the meatballs, I used 1/2 lb grnd pork, 1/2 lb. grnd beef, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic salt, 1 tsp steak spice and 1 tbsp worchester sauce and froze the rest of meatballs for next batch. I also browned the meatballs before adding them to the soup. I increased the carrots to 1/2 cup, and decreased the pasta (acini di pepe) to 1/2 cup. The pasta soaks up alot of liquid, so I cooked it separately and added it when the soup was finished cooking. I'm definitely making this one again, and recommending it to others!
Delicious! Easy to make! Wonderful~
I followed the advice of others:
1. Make pasta separately (Acini de Pepe instead of orzo)
2. Baked the meatballs at 350 for 25 minutes
3. Used frozen spinach (I had some on hand)
I also added some celery as well as some onion, garlic and zucchini that I had sauteed in olive oil. (also other people's suggestions) It was a nice touch but I think I will skip it next time and stick with the original recipe.
I subbed in frozen chopped spinach for the escarole-this was delicious and easy!
This was fabulous! I made it for co-workers and they loved it! I did take the advice of so many and did sub acini di pepe for the orzo, a bag of baby spinach for the escarole, baked the meatballs ahead of time, and added a small boiled and diced chicken breast. It was unbelievably good! I even did it all ahead of time, kept things separated, and then put it all in the crock pot to heat through for lunch. Thanks for the recipe Star!!!
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Italian Wedding Soup I
Serving Size: 1/4 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat: 129
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