It is a snowy day. I am pregnant. I want soup. But not just any soup. I want Italian Wedding Soup. And we don’t have any cans of it, and last time I used the canned stuff it wasn’t as good as I remembered anyway. Not to mention I’m snowed in and can’t get to the store. (Or rather, my husband has the carseat, and even if he didn’t, the car doors are frozen shut)
|My one year old looking at the first real snow this winter|
Pregnancy tastebuds persist.
I remember that when I was grocery shopping I bought both hot Jimmy Dean and a bag of chopped spinach, neither of which my husband likes.
Enter Pinterest, and too many different recipes to choose from, all a little different. I finally picked this one, but by this point I am getting hungry and decide that little tiny meatballs are far too much work. Crumbled sausage will work just fine.
So I totally skipped the meatball portion of the recipe, and made lots of other adaptations along the way, for either time or ingredients-on-hand’s sake. Here is what I came up with.
I’m enjoying it as I type, and it is totally satisfying the craving. Completely. That and then some. It is making my day so much better, and it’s been a really good day so far. And I will never buy the
version again. Ever. This is far superior.
Okay, I know, enough already.
Here’s the recipe without further ado:
Easy Italian Wedding Soup
1 lb. Jimmy Dean sausage1/4 c. red onion, chopped3 cloves garlic, minced1-2 carrots, sliced1-2 stalks celery, chopped small7 c. chicken broth1 12-oz pkg. frozen chopped spinach8 oz package penne pasta 1 Tbsp. dried oreganoSalt & pepper. 2 eggsParmesan cheese
Brown sausage. I added a little water along the way to prevent it from burning. Place colander over a soup pot and drain sausage into it. You should have sausage drippings almost covering the bottom of your pot. Set sausage aside.
Heat sausage grease over low-med until a drip of water dropped in sizzles. Now add onion, garlic, carrots & celery. Cover and cook for about 10 min or until veggies are tender. Be careful not to let the garlic burn. If it starts to brown too much, add a little chicken broth.
Add broth, sausage, spinach, pasta, oregano, salt & pepper. Bring to a low boil. Cover and boil 10 min or until pasta is done.
Dip out some of the broth and put it in a small saucepan. Whisk the eggs into it and return to pot. Cover and cook until eggs are set. Serve garnished with Parmesan.
I used Jimmy Dean because there's just enough grease for this recipe. Although we will go store-brand on a lot of things, sausage is one we don't, because of the grease factor. The Jimmy Dean sausage just seems to crumble better and there's almost no grease to drain off. Absolutely perfect for recipes like this one. I used hot, but Italian, sage, or original would be good too. Maple would probably be weird.
For the pasta, the original recipe called for ditalini (almost like short macaronis. I had to Google it.) and some of the others called for more of an orzo or stelle, but we had nothing like that in our pantry. Snowed in, remember? I used Penne and it is yummy. I had macaroni but I thought that would be weird, and of course linguini or angel hair would not have worked. My other option was shell noodles, but I am saving those for some epic mac-n-cheese. Shell mac-n-cheese was always my favorite.
Salt & Pepper
The original recipe called for 1 tsp of salt and pepper (I wasn't sure if that meant combined, or each) but I didn't use that much. I used a combination of some broth I canned this summer, and broth made my chicken boullion. Use less salt if you’re using chicken boullion to make your broth.
Use a little more broth if you like a brothy soup. I think I'm more of a creamy soup or stew gal, because I don't like a lot of extra broth. I didn't completely measure the broth when I was making this, but I'm pretty sure it was real close to the 7 cups the original recipe called for. It doesn't have much broth now that the noodles are cooked.