I learned to make Italian Wedding Soup from my sister-in-law, Carol, and then my co-worker, Carole, told me how she makes it. I think the common thread is chicken broth, meatballs, and spinach, beyond that there’s a lot of room for creativity. This homey soup has a wonderful array of flavors and textures.
Ed’s comes from a small town, not far from from Pittsburgh on the Monongahela River. The the area is a real mosaic of European heritage. While the roots run to many countries, Italian and Polish cusines dominate the food scene.
This is the first time I’ve thought about this, but even though my late in-laws families came from Wales and France, the foods most often served in the family home tended to be Italian and Polish, or maybe it’s just that these dishes were different than my mother and grandmothers would have made. A pot roast or fried chicken wouldn’t have caught my attention but kielbasa with cabbage and noodles certainly did.
It’s not surprising that the first time I had Italian Wedding Soup was at a banquet in Western Pennsylvania. The occasion was Ed’s high school reunion. It’s something I make every winter now. I love how travel and experience add to our repertoire of interesting dishes. I hope you’ll enjoy this one.
- 1¼ pounds ground turkey
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons mustard
- ¼ cup bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- salt & pepper
- chicken stock (I made mine by boiling 2 chicken carcasses from the Polish market in water)
- chicken meat (in this case, just the meat I removed from the bones after simmering for a couple of hours)
- vegetables (I used a prepared packet of soup veg: 4 carrots, 2 parsnips, 1 leek, 1 slice celery root)
- 1 bag of frozen spinach (my frozen spinach turned out to be pureed, I should have purchased fresh)
- ½ cup orzo (optional)
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Combine all ingredients
- Form into small meatballs, less than 1 inch in diameter
- Bake until lightly brown, about 20 minutes.
- While the meatballs are baking, simmer stock with chicken and soup vegetables, until veg are tender.
- Add meatballs and spinach, simmer another 15 - 20 minutes. I sometimes add orzo at this point.
- Slowly add egg while stirring the soup. You're ready to serve.