Grandma's Soup

One of my many blessings of childhood is that I had an Italian grandmother.  My grandmother Mary Rose was your traditional Italian grandma, joyful, big, gentle and strong.  She was hands down the greatest cook the world has ever known.  I am not even exaggerating, and I have been know to exaggerate.  

We always entered Grandma's house through the back door, which led directly to her kitchen.  The smells coming from that kitchen are embedded in my heart for ever.  It was always a mixture of freshly baked bread, garlic, off the vine tomatoes and comfort.  Grandma's kitchen was my favorite place to be.  She was always feeding someone, me, my cousins, the family down the street, the mailman, everyone had a place at her table.  I have so many wonderful memories of this sweet women and most of them took place around food and in that kitchen. I only had Grandma until I was 11 years old, but not a day goes by that I don't think of her. Today, I just want to share one of my favorite recipe memories with you.  Grandma's Soup, Italian Wedding Soup "Minestra Maritata".  

We always had Grandma's Minestra at Christmas and she would make it a few times of year if she had "good escarole" in her garden, which was massive and beautiful.  I always associated this soup with her because my mother never made it and I can only remember one of my aunts making it after Grandma was gone.  So to me it was Grandma's soup.  I have made a few changes to what I believe was her original recipe.  She never really wrote any recipes down and if she did, it was only a list of ingredients.  Instead of escarole, I use spinach and I add pasta, Stellina (tiny stars).  This soup is delicious and comforting.  

Minestra Maritata  Italian Wedding Soup
For the Meatballs:
3/4- 1lb ground chicken
4-5 slices white bread (ground into breadcrumbs)
2-3 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley
1 tablespoon milk
2 gloves garlic
about 1/4 cup grated Romano Cheese
1 slightly beaten egg

For soup:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tsp butter
3-4 stalks of celery, chopped
1 small onion
2 carrots grounded in good processor
2 48 oz containers of chicken broth 
3/4 cup white wine
1 14 oz can of spinach
3 tablespoons fresh dill
1 cup small star pasta
salt/pepper to taste

Place ground chicken in a large bowl.  In a small food processor, process bread until they are bread crumbs.  I always make a little extra in case needed once meatballs are mixed.

Process the parsley and garlic together until fine and add to mixture.  Add Romano cheese, egg, S/P and mix.  If mixture is too dry add the milk or if too soft add more bread crumbs.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and make tiny meatballs.  You should have between 40-50 meatballs.  Bake in a 350 oven 30 minutes.

While meatballs are baking, Put oil and butter in a large soup pot and saute chopped onions and celery for 5 minutes or until translucent, add the carrots and saute for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Add the white wine and let cook for a minute.  Add 1 1/2 containers of the chicken broth and let simmer over med heat until meatballs are done.  Once meatballs are baked, add to soup and bring soup to a boil.  Reduce heat and add parsley, dill and spinach,  simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Return to a boil and add pasta and boil according to package directions.  We like our soup thick so I often add extra pasta.  If soup is too thick, add the remaining chicken broth.

Serve this soup with extra Ramona cheese and garlic bread.  YUM!

What are your favorite food memories of your grandmother?  Love stays with you forever!

Please be sure to leave me a note if you come for a visit and be sure to add your pretty picture to my blog followers!  Linking up with the Saturday Soiree and Wow Us Wednesday,Archives Fridays

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  1. It looks delicious! I'll try it once.

    1. Oh, you should definitely give it a try! Thank you so much for visiting today. I hope you have a great weekend.
      xoxo Mickey

  2. stopping by from Blog Love Project

    that looks awesome - I've only had the canned kind - your grandma sounds great

    I learned some cooking from my Grandmother too and also knitting and other crafts.

    Have a great day :)

    1. Hi Susan, Grandmas are great, I wish I was older when she was around, she knew how to do everything! Thank you so much for visiting I would love if you would add yourself as a follower, its always good to have a few new friends. Have a great weekend.
      xoxo Mickey

  3. This looks delish! Food is always better when it stirs up strong memories!!!

    1. Hi Kim, Food is one of those things that stirs so many memories. Thank you so much for visiting please take a minute to add yourself as a follower, I'd love to visit your blog too. Have a great weekend.
      xoxo Mickey

  4. Yes, It is very yummy! Thank you so much for visiting, I hope you can make it back very soon!

    xoxo Mickey

  5. Authentic Italian cooking! This recipe looks awesome! Loved reading about your grandmother. It seems we don't really appreciate them until they are not around. Thanks for this great recipe!

    1. Hi Sandy, My Grandma was a great lady. Thanks so much for stopping by to say hello!

  6. Replies
    1. Hi Rachel,
      So true, it is good stuff. Thanks for visiting.

  7. This looks amazing! I hope my family likes it we will be trying this soon!
    Thanks for linking up to FTAF


    1. Hi Erica,
      Please let me know what the family thinks if you try it. Its a great meal and a great memory.
      xoxo Mickey

  8. Sounds amazing I am going to give this a try i know I have heard my husband talk about his mom making this .
    Please do more cooking videos I love all your recipes . Thanks

  9. Hi Mickey, I am subscribed to you on YouTube. I am also subscribed to your blog here but do not get your updates for some reason. This soup sounds so good. I love your blog, your YouTube and all of your recipes, decorating etc. Thanks for sharing and all that you do. Happy Holidays !!! xox
    Susan- Rose