Once again, it's Weekend Herb Blogging. Go to Kalyn's and read about all the other sites with great recipes featuring herbs. I learn something useful every weekend from the other herb bloggers. This weekend my lead actor is arugula, but we also have basil and fresh oregano in supporting roles. The fresh oregano goes in my meatball recipe. But this was a moment in time when rolling raw meat into little balls was about as tempting as sticking red hot needles into my eyes. So, I used a package of Aidell's sun dried tomato meatballs, which are pretty good. Not as good as homemade meatballs, but that's OK. I was very tired and rushed, so thank you Aidells.
This is a thrown together soup, based on things I had in my pantry and
refrigerator. It's not a complicated recipe, to say the least. I
thought the arugula was a nice change from kale and spinach, which I
use a lot in soup. It added a stronger taste and maintained a nice texture
for some time, even after the soup was reheated several times.
Arugula and Meatball soup with Pesto
The Meatballs (Adapted from Martha Stewart)
2 slices white bread, crusts removed
1/4 cup milk
1 pound ground meat. Can be beef, pork or turkey---or a mixture of each
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove minced
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, minced
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon olive
Assembling the Soup
4 cups chicken stock
Arugula (about 2 cups) sliced
1 can (15 ounces) canollini beans
1 cup small pasta, uncooked farfalline or other small pasta, such as macaroni, mini-penne, or orzo.
1. Soak bread with milk in a bowl for about 3 minutes. Squeeze excess from bread and tear into little pieces. Stir bread, meat, onions, salt, pepper and oregano together. Roll into 1-1/2 inch balls.
2. Heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Saute meatballs turning frequently until they are cooked through, about 12 minutes.
3. Cook pasta according to directions on package, drain when done, rinse with cold water and set aside.
3. Bring stock to a boil, then reduce to medium low. Add meatballs, arugula, beans and cooked pasta.
Serve soup in bowls with a spoonful of pesto on top.
Classic Pesto Recipe (Peggy Trowbridge),
* 2 tablespoons coarse-chopped walnuts or pine nuts
* 2 garlic cloves, peeled
* 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
* 4 cups basil leaves (about 4 ounces)
* 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
Process the pine nuts and garlic a blender or food processor until finely minced. Add the olive oil and pulse three times. Add basil, Parmesan cheese, and salt to the processor bowl. Process until finely minced, scraping down sides.
Refrigerate leftovers and use within 1 week or freeze in ice cube tray and store the cubes in a container in the freezer.
Yield: 3/4 cup