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Minestra Maritata (Italian Wedding Soup)

Minestra Maritata Soup aka Italian Wedding Soup

I whipped up this recipe one cold night when I didn't know what to make for dinner, but saw we had frozen meatballs, a bunch of veggies, and I wanted a warming, comforting soup.

The term "wedding soup" comes from the Italian language phrase "minestra maritata" ("married soup"), which is a reference to the flavor produced by the combination/"marriage" of greens and the meat. I used Israeli Couscous (Fregola Sarda too), because it was what I had on hand and it made for a wonderful texture. Traditionally, it's made with acini di pepe or orzo and some recipes mix in scrambled eggs. I used frozen meatballs to make this a quick dish, and it only took about 15-20 minutes of prep time and 10 minutes at a boil. 

This recipe made a large batch, enough for 6-8 servings.

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 tablespoons mojo garlic sauce
2 carrots, sliced
2 celery ribs, sliced
2 cups chopped fresh spinach 
1 Bay leaf
About 20 meatballs 
6 cups chicken broth 
1 cup pearled/Israeli couscous
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped dill

Sautéed onions, garlic sauce, and bay leaf in olive oil. Once translucent add celery carrots, and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add spinach and meatballs and sauté for a few minutes. Add couscous, herbs and chicken broth. Stir and bring to boil. Simmer for 25-30 minutes.

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