I’m baaaaaaack! It’s been a crazy Summer — we bought and moved into our first house!! So between packing, moving, unpacking, decorating, and being up to my eyeballs in DIY home projects, I haven’t had much time to blog.. until now!
I have done some really cool projects from refinishing my beloved childhood kitchen table, to making really cool industrial shelving for my living room using pipes and gorgeous stained wood. And in the mean time, I’ve just been making some favorite repeat dinners we’ve had a million times (like meatloaf, yum!).
In the pictures, You’ll see my kitchen chairs have 3 colors: the top is the original color, the seat is the new stain I did, and the legs are the white I did. The table was painted white at the base and restained on top to match the chair seats.
Also, we’ve had another milestone happen.
Our daughter, Holly, turned 5 this summer and is now in Kindergarten!! I’m not entirely sure when or how she’s already old enough to go to Elementary School, but it’s happening. Holly informed me yesterday that she’s IN LOVE with a boy she met on the bus that same day — a 1st grader. After I promptly informed her of the difference between being in love versus having a crush, I couldn’t help but chuckle. They grow up so fast, don’t they?
I do love getting Holly in the kitchen with me, and yesterday was one of those days. We made Gluten Free Italian Wedding Soup for dinner, which is a chicken broth based soup with tiny pasta, tiny meatballs, and spinach.
Speaking of those meatballs, that’s where Holly comes in. I always double the meatball part of the recipe because a single portion only calls for 1/2 pound of ground beef and 1/2 pound of ground pork, but the grocery store only sells these meats by the pound. So by doubling my meatball recipe, I don’t waste my groceries. I simply freeze the second half to make this easy soup even easier next time we want it. To make the meatballs gluten free, I use 2 slices of my husband’s gluten-free Udi’s bread, thawed (we keep his bread in the freezer by the way), and obliterated in the food processor. Other flavors involved are grated onion, minced garlic, and chopped parsley. It’s perfect! I just roll them all up using a very small cookie scoop, which makes about 90 meatballs for a doubled recipe (or 45 for a single recipe). You can see why I want Holly’s help for this process!
I have never been able to find the traditional Acini de Pepe pasta used for Italian Wedding Soup in a gluten-free version, so I use GF Orzo pasta, which is tiny and fun, and looks like rice.
To compile the soup, I combine 12 cups of chicken broth and a box of frozen chopped spinach, and bring the liquid to a boil.
Once that has boiled, I slowly add the meatballs, stirring gently, so they don’t stick together. When the broth returns to a boil, I add the GF orzo pasta, gently stirring again so they don’t stick together either.
I cook this for 20 minutes, stirring once in a while, scrapping the bottom of the pot to make sure my orzo haven’t attached themselves tot he bottom. Then I turn off the heat and let the soup cool for about 5 minutes. The pasta will actually puff up a little more as it sits, making the soup less brothy and more like a stew consistency, which I love.
Gluten Free Italian Wedding Soup
- 1 smallonion, grated
- 1/3 cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 slices Udi’s Gluten Free sliced bread, thawed and blitzed in food processor until breadcrumbs form
- 8 ounces ground beef
- 8 ounces ground pork
- 12 cups chicken broth
- 1 box frozen chopped spinach
- 12 ounce package Gluten Free Orzo pasta
- Salt and pepper to taste
Meatballs: Stir together the onion, parsley, eggs, garlic, salt, GF breadcrumbs, ground beef and ground pork. Shape the meat into small meatballs, and place on a baking sheet. (Make double, and freeze half to use for next time!)
Soup: Bring chicken broth and frozen spinach to a boil. Add meatballs, slowly while gently stirring to make sure they don’t stick together. Let the broth return to a boil and add Gluten Free Orzo pasta, also stirring gently. Cook for 20 minutes, until meatballs are cooked and the pasta is tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.