Prep 0 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
This is a variation of my mom's recipe. It's one of my favorites of hers. If you're in a hurry, you can use all chicken broth and leave out the fresh chicken. Traditionally this calls for escarole, but I don't like the bitterness of it.
- 1⁄2 lb chicken parts (whatever you like)
- 4 quarts water
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 1 lb , your favorite meatball recipe
- 1⁄2 cup grated fresh pecorino romano cheese, plus more for serving
- 1⁄2 cup uncooked rice or 1 cup small shell pasta, such as achini de pepe, orzo, ditalini
- 2 (15 ounce) cans chicken broth
- 1 egg, scrambled
- Saute onion in olive oil until soft, but not browned.
- Add chicken parts, water, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper.
- Bring to boil, then simmer for about an hour.
- While that's cooking, make up a batch of your favorite meatballs and form into rather small balls (smaller than a ping pong ball).
- Remove chicken to a plate and strain broth.
- Place broth back in soup pot, add canned chicken broth (for more flavor), and meatballs, and return to boil.
- Cut chicken into small pieces.
- When meatballs are cooked, add pasta or rice until cooked.
- Add spinach, chicken and cheese.
- When spinach is wilted, stir soup vigorously and add scrambled egg in a slow stream so that it forms thin ribbons in soup. If you like, you can add some more fresh herbs at this point (parsley, thyme, basil, etc.).
- Serve with extra grated cheese. I like this with some good crusty Italian bread, and a nice glass of wine.