Spine-ing For The Fjords.
The Cultural Fringe

Friday Food: Chicken Meatball Minestrone

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.

Making the mince mixture

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.

Chance of meatballs

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.

Stocking up

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.

Almost soup

Serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese on top and buttered toast.

  Chicken meatball minestrone




Ooh! Chicken meatballs sound great :)


I do find making meatballs a bit onerous, but this does look and sound delicious!


looks divine!!


Yum - I think you've given me a good recipe for tomorrow night's dinner! Thank you!!


So many scrummy food posts lately Cindy. The recipes are ones that are right up my alley!!


haha, I'd not realised they'd gone away either ;)

this does look rather yummy, and very Autumn-y too


I don't think meatballs ever went away either - this sounds delish.


Reporting back: I followed your instructions for the meatballs, except for substituting fresh herbs from the garden for the parsley (not my fave), and adding half a cup of breadcrumbs.
I gently fried the meatballs in my big electric frypan, and then when nearly done I added some fresh garlic and garlic butter to the pan, let that cook a minute, then emptied the last of the sour cream and a glug or two of cream on top and cooked for a couple of minutes to make a garlic cream sauce.
Served on curly pasta which broccoli and snow peas.
Verdict: DELISH!!! Very tender meatballs, and I would have liked a bit more sauce but forgot to add pasta water to it to thin and extend. Not too expensive either - probably came in under the $10 mark for a family meal, especially considering that I had enough left over to make 4 lunches with 4 meatballs each.

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