Albondigas Soup

It's amazing what a few cultural tweaks can do to a recipe.

A friend of mine (who happens to be doing the 21-Day Sugar Detox in my March group) suggested this soup and gave me a quick rundown on how to make it. It sounded pretty easy and I had most of the ingredients on hand, so that's a sell for me. Plus, I love soup. And it's raining today. Cold. No-brainer.

I'm a sucker for easy recipes, and this one is basically just boiling a lot of vegetables (similar fashion to my Chicken Soup) and adding in some flavor profiles like garlic, cilantro and crushed tomato. The "albondigas" (meatballs) required nothing more than mashing up ground turkey with spices (salt/pepper/garlic powder/onion powder), an egg and 1/4 cup of almond meal. Throw into the boiling broth. Done.

Mr. Evolve Well literally just told me that this is one of his new favorite soups. It's going in the vault.

If ever I am feeling adventurous, I may try to sauté the vegetables and brown the potatoes and meatballs to get a nice caramelization going on them first. I bet it would take the whole thing up a few notches. 

As is: this soup is really truly good good good. The cilantro gives it a hint of Mexican soul-foodness that my usual soups just don't carry. Add avocado and green onions on top, and voila! Or should I say, "eso!"

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 cups chicken broth (or filtered water if you don't have enough broth)
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium potatoes, diced (you could also sub rice or millet for the starch in this dish. Make it yours).
  • 1 bell pepper (any color you like. I used yellow)
  • 2 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 jar of crushed tomatoes (I like glass jars)
  • 4 cups baby spinach (or baby kale or arugula)
  • Generous handful cilantro
  • Handful of parsley
  • 1 pound ground chicken or turkey
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • avocado and green onion to garnish

WHAT TO DO:

  1. Bring broth to a boil with some salt to flavor.
  2. Add garlic, onion, carrots, celery, and potato into broth and allow to boil 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add zucchini, bell pepper, bay leaf, and crushed tomatoes and bring to boil, reduce to simmer. 
  4. Meanwhile, combine ground chicken/turkey with seasonings (salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder) plus the egg and almond flour. Form small meatball-size balls and drop into boiling broth.
  5. Add cilantro and parsley, reserving a small portion of the cilantro.
  6. Reduce broth to simmer for at least 30 minutes. Add salt and garlic powder as needed. (The longer it simmers, the better the flavors).
  7. 10 minutes prior to serving, throw in the baby spinach. (You can really do this at any point but it stays a brighter green if you do it at the end).
  8. 5 minutes prior to serving, throw in remaining cilantro, or use as garnish.
  9. Top with diced avocado and chopped green onion. Organic sour cream...
  10. Don't be afraid to eat the next day. Everything tastes twice as good!