According to Donna Hay, meatballs are back. I didn't know they had ever gone away. The most onerous part of this recipe is frying off the little meatballs, and that only took 15 minutes: not so long.
I substituted Parmesan for Pecorino and baby spinach for silverbeet. I used a 20ml tablespoon and made 36 meatballs. The recipe says it makes 4 hearty serves, or in this case, 6 ordinary ones!!
Chicken Meatball Minestrone serves 4 or 6
- 500g chicken mince
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
- grated zest of a lemon
- saly and pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup or 150g fresh ricotta
- olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, finely sliced
- 1.5 litres, or 2.5 pints, chicken stock
- 200g smallish pasta, I used bows as I had them already
- 250g baby spinach, chopped
- extra Parmesan cheese for embellishment
Put the mince, egg, Parmesan, parsley and lemon zest in a bowl and mix well. Gently fold in the fresh ricotta.
Roll tablespoons of the mixture into balls with wet hands.
Heat the oil in a pan over a medium to high heat. When I had a high heat it smoked the house out. Fry the meatballs in batches until well browned and cooked through: 5-8 minutes. I cooked three batches of 12. Set aside.
You need a saucepan large enough to hold all the ingredients. Fry the garlic in a little olive oil for a minute and then add the stock and bring to the boil. Gently add the meatballs and the pasta.
Cover tightly with a lid and cook for 12-15 minutes or until the pasta is ready. Add the baby spinach and cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
Serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese on top and buttered toast.