This recipe is from the post: Virginia really is for Lovers…of Life, Food, Wine and Nature.
Cooks note: We halved this recipe, used all chicken sausage and all Parmesan cheese, shallot instead of garlic and used arugula instead of spinach, and it was fabulous. Here is a link to Ina Garten’s original recipe and below is our adaptation of the halved recipe. You can’t go wrong here.
Serves 4. Can be doubled.
3/4 pound spicy chicken sausage, no casings
1/3 cup fresh white bread crumbs
1 tablespoon minced shallot
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten, then halved
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon good olive oil
2/3 cup minced yellow onion
2/3 cup diced carrots (2 carrots), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1/2 cup diced celery (1-2 stalks), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
5 cups low fat no salt chicken stock
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup small pasta such as orzo
2 Tablespoons minced fresh dill
5 ounces baby arugula, washed and trimmed
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees . For the meatballs, place the chicken sausage, bread crumbs, shallots, parsley, Parmesan, milk, 1/2 egg (save the rest for breakfast), 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl and combine gently with a fork. With a teaspoon, drop 1 to 1 1/4-inch meatballs onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. (You should have about 20 meatballs. They don’t have to be perfectly round.) Bake for 30 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned. Set aside.
In the meantime, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the simmering liquid and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the fresh dill and then the meatballs to the soup and simmer for 1 minute. Taste for salt and pepper (you will need some salt if using low sodium chicken broth). Stir in the fresh arugula and cook for 1 minute, until the arugula is just wilted. Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle each serving with extra grated Parmesan.