Here in Charleston, we can usually count on two things:
- A good wedding is just around the block.
- Snow days just aren't in the cards for us.
This past January, one of these tried and true tidbits was proven to be wrong. Yup, that's right. Charleston received a 4-inch blanket of snow, inspiring one of my favorite cold weather recipes and a whole lot of imagination from my children.
With the house full of kids, I started the day by making Italian Wedding Soup. My girls were looking for entertainment, so I jokingly suggested they plan a wedding to pair with the soup. After all, snow days are for creativity, not electronics! I went off to work and what I came home to was beyond my imagination.
My dining room had been rearranged to fit rows of seating. Our neighbors (invited with paper invitations, of course) were dolled up anticipating what I had yet to find out was a full-blown wedding! My daughter Cate (11) and our neighbor Wells (5) got "hitched" that blissful snow day. It is a memory we will always cherish and giggle about!
See the full day on my @calliesbiscuits Instagram highlight: The Wedding.
for the soup:
2 tablespoons butter
3-4 celery stalks, cut into chunks
4 carrots, cut into chunks
1 large white onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 box chicken stock (32 ounce)
3 cups water
1 parmesan rind
Fresh thyme, about 15 sprigs
Fresh oregano, about 5 stems
Fresh parsley, about 10 sprigs
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
½ cup Ditalini pasta
2 cups fresh spinach
Salt and pepper to taste
For the Meatballs:
1 pound ground pork
¼ cup breadcrumbs
¼ cup parmesan
2 green onions, sliced
2 tablespoons parsley, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the butter in a large dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Add in the celery, carrots and onions. Sauté until vegetables have softened. Add in the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add in the chicken stock, water, parmesan rind and crushed red pepper. Tie the fresh herbs together with kitchen twine and place in soup. Let soup simmer for 30 minutes.
- While the soup is simmering, make the meatballs. Turn the oven broiler to high heat. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and place a baking rack on top. Spray the baking rack with cooking spray. In a large bowl gently mix all the meatball ingredients together. Roll them into 18-20 little meatballs. Place the meatballs on the baking rack and bake for 8 minutes on each side. Remove from oven.
- Add the pasta and meatballs to the soup and let simmer for another 30 minutes or until pasta is tender. Add salt and fresh pepper to taste.
- Turn off the heat and remove parmesan rind and herb bundle. Add in the fresh spinach, stirring to cook the spinach.
- Serve immediately with buttery garlic bread and enjoy!