Sunday, September 8, 2013

Minestrone With Chicken Meatballs

  • 6 ounces ground chicken (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumb
  • 6 tablespoons parmesan cheese, finely grated, divided, plus more for garnish
  • 4 garlic cloves, 2 minced, 2 thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
  • 1 large egg, whisked
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 5 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup ditalini
  • 1 cup carrot, peeled and cut int 1/2 inch rounds
  • 1 cup Baby Spinach (packed)
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper, freshly ground
  • fresh basil, chopped


  1. Mix the chicken, breadcrumbs, 3 tbsp Parmesan, 2 minced garlic cloves, chives, egg, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp black pepper in a medium bowl. Form into 1/2 inch diameter meatballs. (Should make about 28).
  2. Heat oil in a small pot over medium heat. Cook the meatballs until golden all over about 3 minutes. They will finish cooking in the soup. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  3. Add leek to a pot and cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add 2 thinly sliced garlic cloves; cook for 1 minute. Add the broth and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Add the ditalini and carrots; simmer until pasta is almost al dente, about 8 minutes.
  4. Add the meatballs; simmer until the pasta is al dente, carrots are tender, and meatballs are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the spinach and 3 tbsp Parmesan; stir until the spinach is wilted and the Parmesan is melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Ladle soup into bowls. Garnish with chopped basil and Parmesan.

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