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Mini Meatball Soup with Broken Spaghetti and Escarole

Mini Meatball Soup with Broken Spaghetti and Escarole


  • 1 1/2 pounds meatloaf mix

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • A handful flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

  • 3-4 tablespoons onion, grated

  • 4 cloves garlic, 2 cloves finely chopped or grated, 2 cloves sliced

  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided, for drizzling

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1/2 pound whole wheat spaghetti, broken into thirds

  • 1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped

  • A few grates of nutmeg

  • 1 large or 2 medium heads escarole, cleaned and coarsely chopped

  • 8 cups chicken stock (64 ounces)

  • 1 parmesan cheese rind


Pre-heat the oven to 400°F. Season the meat with salt and pepper. Moisten the panko with milk in a small bowl, then add to the meat. Add the parsley, cheese, grated onion, chopped garlic, egg and a fat drizzle of olive oil and mix well with your hands to combine. Roll into walnut-sized meatballs and bake until crisp and cooked through, about 12-15 minutes. In a soup pot over medium-high heat, add the butter and melt. Add the pasta and toast until fragrant and toasty; season with salt and pepper. Remove the spaghetti and reserve. Add the remaining olive oil, one turn of the pan, to the pot with the chopped onions and sliced garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook to tender, 10 minutes. Add the escarole and wilt; season with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Add the stock and cheese rind, then bring the soup to a low boil. Add the pasta back to the soup and cook to tender. Add the mini meatballs and serve. This is one of many "Yum-o!" recipes – it's good and good for you. To find out more about Yum-o!, Rachael's nonprofit organization, visit