Greek Style Minestrone with Turkey and Feta Meatballs

I got this soup recipe from my friend Heather a long time ago. My husband, children and I have been fighting a nasty cold so I thought this soup would be great because it’s filled with a lot of veggies. It’s a vegetarian soup but the recipe notes that it’s great with Italian sausage too. I went to two different grocery stores looking for linked turkey Italian sausage and they were out. I decided to make turkey meatballs with feta so I grabbed some ground turkey. The recipe called for eggplant, but I forgot to get one at the store, so I used a yellow squash instead. The soup was delicious with a hint of dill, full of garlic and veggies. The meatballs were amazing! I really loved how moist and flavorful they were. I cooked my meatballs in the skillet before I threw them in the soup. I realized after doing this that most meatballs (for soup) are cooked in the broth, I will try it that way next time. Either way, the meatballs were great and added a wonderful flavor and texture. We all, kids included, loved this soup. I served it with a Greek salad and fresh hot bread. I had leftovers for lunch the next day and it’s flavor was even better.

Turkey Meatballs:

  • 1 lb of ground turkey meat with Italian seasonings
  • 2 tbsp sweet yellow onion, diced finely
  • 2 tbsp feta cheese (I used reduced fat)
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup of garlic and herb bread crumbs
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 tsp olive oil (for cooking meatballs)

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and gently combine with fingers until thoroughly mixed. Roll into very small meatballs.

Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat, once the pan is hot add the meatballs and cook for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside.

Soup:

  • 1/2 cup sweet yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, coarsely chopped
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 6 cups of chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup of long grain brown (or white) rice
  • 1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1-2 tsp fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 tsp of oregano
  • Salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste
  • 1 zucchini, chopped into bite size pieces
  • 1 yellow squash, chopped into bite size pieces
  • 1 can small white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups sliced fresh spinach (about 3 ounces)
  • Turkey meatballs
  • 1/2 cup of feta cheese for topping

Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic, stock, rice and tomatoes in a large Dutch oven, over medium heat. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and simmer, covered, until the vegetables and rice are tender, about 25-30 minutes.

Increase the heat to medium and add beans, meatballs, zucchini and squash. Taste and re-season if needed. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes, stirring once. Stir in spinach and simmer, uncovered, until spinach is wilted and all vegetables are tender, about 2 minutes longer. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with feta cheese. Enjoy.

Note: If not serving immediately, add the spinach just before serving to retain the bright color and prevent overcooking.

Click here for a printable version of this recipe

Award and a meme:

I’ve been tagged to do a meme from Annie at Yes, I want to see the dessert menu. Thanks for passing it on to me Annie.

I am to write 6 random things about myself:

1. I used to do a cooking show while doing dishes when I was a kid. I only did it when no one else was home.

2. I have a lot of freckles.

3. I met my husband at one of my best friend’s wedding. He was a groomsman and I was a bridesmaid.

4. I have two very small tattoos. I got my first one when I was 21 – it’s a Chinese symbol that means “to dream”. I got the second one when I was 36, with 6 of my girlfriends. We all got the Chinese symbol that means “friendship”.

5. I have two cats that don’t get along. Sophie, our younger cat, would love to be our older cat’s friend, but Casey just yowls, hisses and growls at her. Poor little Sophie.

6. I have two really great kids. They are funny, sweet, kind, silly and smart. I feel like the luckiest mom in the world.

Here are the rules:

  • Link to the person who tagged you
  • Post the rules on the blog
  • Write 6 random things about yourself
  • Tag 6 people at the end of your post
  • Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog
  • Let the tagger know when your entry is up

So let’s play tag!

I am tagging:

I also got The Superior Scribbler award awhile ago from Soulchocolate at My Gourmet Kitchen. Thank you so much for passing the award on to me. Be sure to check out her website for beautiful photos that will leave you drooling.

I will pass this award on to the most talented writer I know… Miss Blonde Duck from A Duck in Her Pond. I know you already have this award but you are such a talented girl, I wanted to give you another one. ;-)

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