Thursday, October 27, 2011

Minestrone Soup

10 medium fresh white mushrooms, sliced
2 c. chicken stock
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 celery stock, chopped
2 carrots, pealed and chopped
1/4 c. olive oil
1 bunch fresh spinach, or swiss chard, tough stems removed and chopped
3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 and 1/2 c. butternut squash, peeled and cubed
4 fresh tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped, or 2 (14.5 oz.) canned tomatoes with juice
1 (15.5 oz.) canned white beans, rinsed and drained
piece of Pamigiano-Reggiano cheese rind (optional)
tiny Italian meatballs (optional follow link to meatball recipe)
salt and pepper to taste
serve with fresh parmesan cheese, grated

In a large sauce pan over medium heat, cook onion, carrots, and celery in olive oil, stirring frequently until tender and golden, about 10 min. Stir in mushrooms, chard, or spinach, potatoes, squash, tomatoes, beans and the cheese rind, if using. Add the stock and enough water to barely cover the vegetables. Bring to a simmer and reduce the heat to low. Add tiny Italian meat balls (optional) salt and pepper and cook the soup uncovered until it is thick and vegetables are soft, about 1 and 1/2 hours. Adding water if soup becomes too thick. Serves 8 330 calories with 6 tiny meatballs, 250 calories without, 30 carbs, 25 protein with 6 tiny meatballs, 13 g. protein without meatballs

Italian Beef Meatballs

2 lbs. lean ground beef
3 egg whites
1/2 c. dry bread crumbs
1/2 c. onion finely chopped
1 t. garlic power
1/4 c. parsley flakes
1 t. dried basil
1t. ground black pepper
1/2 c. fresh parmesan cheese (for garnish)

Preheat oven broiler, or frying pan. In a large bowl mix beef, eggs, breadcrumbs, onion, garlic, parsley, basil, and pepper. I usually make two sizes of meatballs 1 T. of meat mixture to be served with marinara sauce over sliced, cooked zucchini squash, or for meatball sandwiches. I use 1 t. of meat mixture to form Tiny Italian meatballs for Minestrone soup. Recommended dinner serving size for a women is 4 large meatballs for protein serving in Meatball Marinara over squash, Meatball sandwiches, and Oriental meatballs. 6 Tiny meatballs in a serving of Minestrone soup