My favorite part of January is upon us: it’s #SoupSwap season! For the fourth year running, my friends and I are getting together for an afternoon of grilled cheese and soup sampling. The event always fills my freezer and recipe box for the season. You can check out recaps of some of our previous soup swaps here and here.
Today, I’m virtually soup-swapping with my blogging friends from #FestiveFoodies. We’re all sharing soup recipes we love to inspire you to make up a pot of cozy comfort food this winter!
This soup comes from Soup for Syria – my Mom gave me a copy for Christmas and I’m totally smitten with it. It’s full of gorgeous recipes and part of the proceeds benefit Syrian refugees – a win-win.
It’s a bit of a time consuming soup, but so worth it. My kids absolutely loved the mini meatballs and I loved how delicious and filling this was. It was outside of our normal flavor profile, but turned out to be a really worthwhile risk!
Whether you’re looking for something outside your norm, or just a great version of an old favorite, you’re sure to find something to fill up your bowl amongst these!
Middle Eastern Meatball Soup with Vegetables
(adapted slightly from Soup for Syria)
1 1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
8 cups beef stock
1 cup fine bulgur
3/4 lb. ground beef
Salt and pepper, to taste
3 onions, finely chopped
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
2 Tbsp. dried mint
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 clove garlic, minced
3 small zucchini, peeled and seeded, sliced into crescents
Add chickpeas and beef stock to a large pot and cook for an hour, until the chickpeas are tender. Set aside.
Wash and drain the bulgur, then add to it to a food processor along with the beef, salt, pepper and one of the onions. Process until a paste. Roll into marble-sized balls.
Heat 1 1/2 Tbsp. of the oil in a large pan and brown the meatballs. Remove and set aside. Add the remaining oil to the pan, along with the onions and salt and cook until lightly browned. Stir in the mint, tomato paste, garlic, juice of the lemon, and pepper. Cook for two minutes.
Spoon the onion mixture into the broth with chickpeas. Add in the zucchini and meatballs and simmer until the meatballs are cooked through and the zucchini is tender, about 15-20 minutes.