I love the food they serve at work! There is always a healthy option, so I am able to adhere to my meal plan without having to cook for myself all the time. It’s so nice, because as of late, I just don’t find myself having the time to cook like I used to. Don’t get me wrong, they still have Nothing Bundt Cakes and Gigi’s Cupcakes lurking in the cafeteria, so it’s not all innocence in there! For the most part, though, it’s really in line with my healthy lifestyle. Plus, we all have to have a little fun now and again, right!?? #gimmedatbundtcake
Last week at work, they served Italian Wedding Soup. I remember the first time I ever had IWS, I fell in love with it! I can’t remember when or where I was, but I remember thinking “where has this soup been all my life, and why am I just now trying it??” Since then, I have just had it from the grocery out of a can, and occasionally at AJ’s from their soup bar. I’ve always wanted to make it, but it’s just been forever on my mental list of things to “make someday.” For some reason after having it work last week though, I got inspired. I started thinking of ways I could make the meatballs, and how to make them healthier. I realized it really wouldn’t take that many ingredients, and most of them really would be healthy! So I made my list, ran to the store, and decided that I was cooking no matter how much stuff I had to get done. I was making time for it, because I was long overdue. Plus, who doesn’t love having some awesome IWS hanging around the house for a few days for dinner?
My friend Lawna always makes soup and posts her pictures on Facebook or sends them to me. So whenever I make soup I always think of her. She joined me that night for the creation of the “soupsterpiece.” Heeeeeeeeey!
We were joined by our vertically challenged, curly tailed sous chef/don’t worry if it falls, I’ve got you covered “person”:
Here are all of the ingredients you will need for your soup:
One package 93/7 lean ground turkey
One package hot Italian turkey sausage (5 links), meat removed from casing
1/4 freshly grated parmesan cheese (not pictured)
Salt and pepper
EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
One yellow onion, chopped
Four carrots, peeled and chopped small
Crushed garlic (or just a couple of minced cloves of fresh garlic)
Fresh Italian parsley, chopped
Le Pastine BIO Italian Macaroni Product “Stelline” *see description and alternatives below*
1lb bag of frozen chopped spinach
2 boxes + one can of chicken broth
This recipe may look complex, but it’s really not at all. The most tedious part is rolling the meatballs, which is still easy. To make those, all you do is remove the hot turkey sausage links from their casing by squeezing the meat out. Combine that meat with the regular ground turkey and parmesan cheese, a couple of teaspoons of chopped Italian parsley, salt and pepper, then using your hands, mix together until uniform. Then roll into small balls and line up onto a cookie sheet until they’re all done. The easiest way to keep them from sticking to your hands while doing this is to keep your hands wet with a little bit of water the whole time.
Then, once you’re done with all of your meatballs (yes, there will be A LOT of them!) start a large skillet on medium and cook them through until done. While the meatballs are cooking, you can start the soup.
After chopping the onion, carrots and parsley (you will need about 1/2 – 3/4 cup), add a couple of swirls of EVOO to the bottom of a large soup pot and let it warm up on medium to high heat. Drop the heat back to medium and add the onions, carrots, garlic and a sprig of rosemary.
Let those cook for about ten to fifteen minutes until the carrots are starting to cook through. At that point, add the broth, and bring the heat up to high. Once the broth is hot, add the meatballs, parsley, and half the bag of spinach. Let the soup come back up to a boil again (the spinach is cold, and will bring the temperature down when you add it.) Remove the sprig of rosemary. It’s ok if some of the leaves have fallen off.
I found those cute little noodles at AJ’s, which is a gourmet grocery store across the street from where I live. They contain 35% spinach and zucchini puree in them, so I figured the more veggies in my diet the merrier! By all means, this recipe just needs a small noodle, such as an orzo or something comparable. Whatever you can find will work. Go ahead and add the noodles (I used half of the box) at this point. Mine called for 12 minutes of cooking time, so I left the stove on for 10 minutes and then turned it off. They turned out perfect! I added some salt and pepper to taste, and that was it! Soup was done!
I hope you enjoyed this one! I am so glad I got to share it with some of my colleagues at work! Let me know if you end up making it yourself, and how it turns out! The beauty of these recipes if you can do whatever you want with them! Change any ingredients to things you like! I hope you guys have an awesome day!