Meal-Worthy Spaghetti and Meatball Soup
Before we start with the hot cocoa, the Christmas cookies, the jingle bells, let's sit back and explore the notion of eating large bowls of soup on cold nights (after long days of shopping for gifts, if you like). After covering the classic tomato, the ever-present chicken noodle, the creamy, the potato (with leeks), the chowder, the chili, minestrone, I'm always left wondering what else is there. Oh, I forgot broccoli cheese. That was a childhood favorite.
Still, when coming up with soups that haven't been done before or that I can't find in a can (making them something different than the norm), I am often at a loss. That is, until my husband ruined my tomato soup plans by making them so much more than I ever thought to do.
I love tomato soup, but without a sandwich on the side, it is really more of a beverage and less of a meal, and so when I suggested that we have tomato soup but not with grilled cheese, my husband rebelled. He added tiny bits of orzo pasta. He fashioned meatballs. He flavored it with all the goodness typically associated with spaghetti sauce, but it's soup. It's spaghetti soup, and it's divine and hearty and meal worthy.
Spaghetti and Meatball Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
3 minced cloves garlic
28 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
28 ounces canned diced tomatoes
1/3 cup water
1 cup orzo pasta
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
kosher salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot, heat the oil over medium. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Add crushed and diced tomatoes and water and simmer for 15 minutes over a medium-low heat, and then puree with a hand blender until desired consistency is reached. Pour in the orzo and cook until tender, 5-10 more minutes. Stir in the cream, season with salt and pepper and simmer over low heat until soup has reached desired temperature. Do not boil.
Heat the meatballs and add one large meatball or multiple small meatballs just before serving. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.