I had a craving for Albondigas : Mexican meatball soup, and went searching the internet for recipes.
I have made it before but never got the flavor just right. I found a recipe on http://www.elise.com that listed mint as the missing ingredient. MINT! Sure, why didn’t I think of that? I have always been impressed with the effect a little sprig of mint has on flavors. That said, try a little mint in your green salad, it’s awesome.
So here is the recipe from elise, with a few changes of my own.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup of tomato sauce
3 quarts of chicken stock or beef stock OR water and bullion cubes (about 2 large)
1 or 2 zucchini, cut into large chunks
1 large carrot, sliced
1/2 lb of string beans, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 or 2 potatoes, cut into large chunks (not really necessary, but I love meatballs and potatoes together)
1 pound ground turkey or beef
1/3 cup of raw white rice
1 raw egg
1/2 cup of chopped fresh mint leaves
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Dried oregano, crumbled
1 tablespoon of brown gravy mix
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Heat oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and minced garlic and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce and broth mixture. Bring to boil and simmer. Add carrots and potatoes.
Prepare meatballs. Mix rice into meat, adding mint, gravy mix (sounds weird but makes ground meat taste meatier), salt and pepper. Add raw egg. Form beef into 1-inch meatballs. Return soup to gentle simmer. Add meatballs and remaining veggies to soup. Cover and let simmer for 1/2 hour. Add a few pinches of oregano, cilantro and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.