Took me awhile to perfect the hack to this one, but dang if it isn’t delicioso! My original base was Marcella Valladolid’s recipe. That’s an easy one too, but sometimes I don’t have all the ingredients on hand (you know I’m lazy) and I wanted to ease up the tomato-ey flavor. This recipe is enough to last this party of one for a couple of days. You can also freeze it. I love spicy so I added more peppers, but the blend below keeps it at a nice heat level below the “holy hell this will rip my stomach lining apart” hot.
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup chopped onions (just buy the pre-chopped version)
- 1/2 lb. ground sirloin
- 1 carrot (cut into rounds)
- 2-3 chilies (I slice 2 fresno red and leave 1 green serrano whole)
- 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes
- 1 can organic garbanzo beans
- 1 yukon gold potato, cut into chunks
- 6 cups organic vegetable stock (compare sodium as it can be surprisingly high!)
- 1 organic zucchini
- 1/2 cup orzo
Meatballs: Either ground sirloin or ground chicken works best, I’ve also tried the beef/pork combo and it was tasty. Season with garlic salt or adobo, Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning and some freshly ground black pepper. I don’t add a ton of seasoning as the soup itself is super flavorful. 1/2 lb. should yield about 20-25 tiny meatballs.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a dutch oven (this one is similar to mine) over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent, watch this as the onions can burn pretty quickly.
- Add the veggie ingredients and then add the veggie stock. Once the stock is added, add the canned ingredients and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, lower the heat to simmer and add the meatballs and orzo. Mix well as the orzo tends to stick to the bottom. You could add more orzo but I find 1/2 cup keeps it from becoming mushy and sticking to the bottom.
- Cook for about 20 minutes and voila, soup for days!
Tip: Save the other 2 cups of veggie stock for re-heating. The orzo tends to get a bit bossy in this soup.