Monday, April 12, 2010

Albondiga Soup

I should say "Rosa's Albondiga Soup," but I have modified the recipe from the original. Also, it tastes better than it looks and is more hearty like a stew as opposed to a soup like chicken noodle.

Albondiga Soup
Serves about 8, but if you had a side dish with it or a salad before it would defintely serve more probably 10-12 with one bowl each. I usually get 2 full dinners out of it and at least one lunch for me and my husband and toddler.  (He has at least 2 big bowls for dinner.)

1-2 lbs ground beef (more if you like a lot of meatballs but less is fine if its all you got.)
2 bunches green onion
4 medium zucchini (Italian zucchini)
2 bunches of cilantro
2-3 Anaheim chilies (sometimes listed as green chilis in the store, I use 2 medium ones)
2 small cans of tomato sauce
2-3 tsp chicken bullion powder (cubes could work too)
1 cup rice (it doesn't sound like a lot but it thickens the soup a lot more than you would think. )
4-6 cups water
Canola oil
dried oregano, dried onion, salt, pepper, garlic powder (okay here is the area I've never measured but I'll give my estimates. 2 tsp oregano . 2 tbsp onion, 1-2 tsp garlic, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1 tsp salt.

1. In a bowl mix beef and all the spices.  If you use a lean beef add some bread crumbs to hold them together. Make 1-2 inch balls. Saute in stock pot until browned on the outside. 2 lbs will make 25-30 balls depending on size so you will have to brown in 2 batches.
2. While sauteing, roast chilies on open burner/flame until blackened.  They will pop a little but its fine just turn them occasionally.  Let cool on a plate.
3. chop zucchini, green onions.  If chilies are cool, run under water and peel them.  Cut out seeds then chop.
4. Take meatballs out of pot. Put in veggies with a few tbsp of oil and saute.
5. Add tomato sauce, bullion and water.  Bring to a boil.
6. Add meatballs back in with 1 c. of rice.
7. Cover pot and simmer on low.
8. Cook at least 30 minutes (but I have left the pot there on low a lot longer and its fine. A good measure is to check if the rice looks done or not.  If you use brown rice you will definitely need longer cooking time.)
9. The last 10 minutes add chopped cilantro.

*Modifications: Add whatever you want to the meatballs, but try to keep it in the Mexican/Spanish family of spices.  I added some Worcestershire sauce and it was good.   If you are into more heat add more chilies or experiment with more flavors in the tomato sauce.  If you are really not into heat, use only 1 chili pepper.  To stretch the soup further you can always add an extra can of chicken or beef broth.  This would probably freeze well but I may leave out the rice and cilantro and then add them in to cook when the soup is thawed.  I've never frozen it myself though.


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