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Dec 24, 2005 05:33 PM

Italian Soup Ideas?

  • t

My neighbor's wife just passed and I would like to make him some Italian soup. I know Minestrone, but was hoping to make something that will remind him of Italia. Any recipes?

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  1. sorry about your friend
    my Calabrese grandma always had a little meatball soup on the stove - very bready meatballs - Italian Wedding Soup is basically that, with a little spinach.

    3 Replies
    1. re: pitu

      Actually wedding soup usually has escarole in it, but spinach is a good substitute.

      What about pasta e fagioli (aka "pasta fazool")?

      Or zuppa di salsiccia, which has crumbled Italian sausage, potatoes and kale or escarole?

      Also, ribollita.

      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        I found ribolitta recipes once by doing an online search on Google: "ribolitta recipe"
        Sorry, I no longer remember it - but just search.
        It's a comfort soup meant to use up leftovers - thick, gruel-like. (not sure if there is one or 2 t's in riboliTa - try both spellings)

        1. re: Niki Rothman

          It's ribollita -- two L's, one T.

    2. White bean and escarole soup is another, and my husband's favorite soup.

      1. Escarole & little meatball soup. Also known as Italian wedding soup. Yum!

        Link: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

        3 Replies
        1. re: willow

          Bumping this as I searched today for a good use of a head of escarole and found this soup recipe. Made it this cold Spring afternoon and it's great. Lots of parmesan cheese in the tiny meatballs has the same effect as throwing a parm rind into your soup. The broth takes on richness of the cheese. I used turkey for the meatballs and it worked very well. Wonder if it freezes fine -- anyone know?

          1. re: yumyum

            I make and freeze Wedding soup all of the time. When reheating you may need to add a bit of broth, depending on how much pasta you use and how much liquid the pasta absorbed. I will also make the meatballs and freeze them on a tray and then transfer them to a freezer bag once they are frozen. This makes the soup even easier to make as I find the meatball to be the most labour intensive part. So if I'm making the soup I make a lot of meatballs so that the next time I'm craving the soup I just have to pop the meatballs out of the freezer and into the broth.

            1. re: chefbec

              Thanks for that advice. The soup has thickened considerably, but thinning it with stock works fine. It's really delicious, and of course better the next day.

        2. That's very sweet of you.

          I agree with the Italian Wedding Soup idea. My dad used to put pastina in with it (I think they even use egg - as in egg drop soup in that soup)...the kind that look like tiny flattened footballs. He also put a little bread crumbs and parmesan into the meatballs.

          1. n
            Niki Rothman@pacbell.net

            There's the Italian Wedding Soup, that's essentially a chicken broth with small meatballs and greens, served with parmesan. This is by no means a standard recipe anymore than is minestrone:
            Escarole is the favorite Italian green, but you could use any that you like as long as, except for spinach which you would add at the last moment, you cooked the greens long enough to mellow out the bitterness completely. Chop some garlic and cook in evoo until only very lightly golden (do not brown = bitter), add broth (unless you have your own rich broth, I prefer Better than Bullion base for broth). Cook the greens in the broth. Either make your own meatballs and add, or use Trader Joe's Cocktail/Party Sized Meatballs (Frozen in a bright yellow bag - these are GREAT meatballs)). If you want it hearty you could serve over rice. But definitely top with fresh grated parmesan once it's been off the boil for a few minutes(to prevent rubberization). Serve with garlic bread and salad with vinagrette & greek olives.