Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Italian Wedding Soup

Are you tired of turkey yet? I’m not, but except for the stash in my freezer, we’re out, so I thought I’d try something new with the less obvious leftovers—Italian wedding soup.

I boiled the turkey carcass (worst word EVER) for a few hours to make broth. Meanwhile, I made a ton of tiny little meatballs out of a pound of ground beef, an egg, some bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, herbs, etc. Keeping the meatballs small is crucial. I also chopped two carrots, six ounces of baby spinach, and two ribs of celery. (I should have used one more carrot.)

When the broth was done, I strained it, skimmed off the fat and brought it back up to a boil. Once gently boiling, I added one cup of small shell pasta, about 2/3 of the raw meatballs (I’ll use the rest in spaghetti in a future meal), the carrots and the spinach. Cook until pasta is done. (If you’re worried about the meatballs cooking all the way, don’t be. They cook faster than the pasta if you’ve made them small. If some are floating, you’re good.)

When it’s almost done, add the spinach and a beaten egg or two. Stir the soup as you’re slowly adding the egg so it looks like confetti. Serves 6.

Note: I also added my leftover pan drippings (I had too much to need it all for gravy) to the broth. It was the consistency of aspic, but that’s fine, it melts in the soup. I had already scraped the fat off of it. You could dump leftover gravy in there too, if you had that.

I have officially used all parts of that turkey. The amount of pleasure I get from knowing this is probably a mental disorder. Ate or froze the meat, made gravy and stuffing from the pan drippings, made soup out of the bones, and made cat food out of the icky parts.

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