A while ago, I saw this homemade stock on Pam's blog For the Love of Cooking. It seemed so easy and simple, that I made it the very same week. You just gather these, put them in the pot with your chicken carcass and lotsa water, and cook away, see here, Pams Blog, for instructions or see My Key Ingredient card below. Anyhow, I yielded about 8 cups of stock and I froze them in batches of 2 cups each in ziplocs. I took a couple of these out to make my family some soup the other day as it was so chilly and I was wanting a warm meal. I used a simple Recipe from Rachael Ray, Comfort Foods Cookbook, using my homemade stock.
Begin by preparing your mini meatballs. Combine together the meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix and roll into little balls. In a deep pot, over medium heat, add some olive oil, chopped carrots, celery, onions, and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Cover pot and cook veggies 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover pot, add your homemade stock if you have it, or canned, and the water to your pot. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. When it boils, reduce the heat a bit, and start to drop your mini meatballs straight into the pot. At this point, Rachael adds the pasta, I do not. I always cook my pasta separate from soup, and add later. I find the pasta absorbs too much of the broth if cooked and stored with the soup. Just sayin'. Cover and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in your coarsely chopped spinach in batches. When its wilted, its done. Adjust seasonings. I add freshly grated parmesan to each bowl. For the pasta, I cook it fresh and mix it with a tiny bit of broth and add it to each bowl. Thats just me though. This is a delicious quick and easy soup for a weeknight and stores well. We loved this quick version of a classic and will be making it again no doubt! I am submitting this to Deb of Kahakai kitchen for Souper Sundays!