Nona’s Italian Wedding Zuppa

I’m not Italian – but I want to be so badly!!

The reality however is, I’m not … 😦

I’ll probably continue wishing and trying to be Italian for as long as I live (…..is this weird?? – never mind, don’t answer that).

I’ve also wanted to call my grandma nona forever … nona just screams cute and cuddly … my granny is cute and cuddly … therefore she’d totally deserves the title nona. If I did call her nona though, I’m sure she’d look at me and wonder what in the world was going on in my little head.

If I explained to her my wish to turn my entire world into an Italian dream (complete with biscotti, tiramisu, gelato and pasta … and pizza … and zeppole…. and an italian polo player 😉 lol) – – she’d be more confused than ever and then probably make me eat something because she’s convinced, food makes everything better ( lol, this is why we get along so well ;)).

If I did have an italian nona though, besides always making delicious cookies and fresh pasta – – she would make me this soup.

It’s not your traditional Italian wedding soup – – she’s my nona … how could it be traditional?!?! … I put pop-tarts in cookies for heaven’s sake. The meatballs are made with chicken … but its pretty delicious none-the-less and I wouldn’t mind living out of italian fantasy by living in an entire pot of it.

Allow yourself to whisk away for a few minutes tonight from the frigid snowy winter, to a cool italian evening – with the sun just setting and ” godere la vostra zuppa” (enjoy your soup ;))

Nona’s Italian Wedding Zuppa

Meatballs:

3 Lbs Ground Chicken

3 Tbsp Fresh Thyme

3 Tbsp Fresh Rosemary

2 Tbsp Salt, Onion Powder, Black Pepper, Ground Garlic

3 Cloves Minced Fresh Garlic

1 Egg

1 Tbsp Cesar Salad Dressing

1 Cup Breadcrumbs

1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 oc. Lightly spray a large baking tray ( I used my largest cookie tray :))

Mix all of the ingredients together, until well combined. Try your best, not to over mix.

Form into 1 Tbsp Balls.

Place on baking tray and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove meatballs from oven and allow to cool.

*At this point, the meatballs can be refrigerated until you are ready to make your soup* – – orr … if you’re hungry

let’s make some soup!!

The Zuppa:

8 Cups Water

4 Cups Chicken Broth ( I used low sodium … just because – – use the fresh stuff, if you’ve got it on hand :D)

1 package Frozen Spinach ~ approximately 2 Cups

1/4 Cup Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

2 Tbsp Black Pepper

2 Tbsp Salt

2 Cups Tripoline pasta ( or any short cut pasta)

Directions: 

Over medium-high heat and in a large soup pot, bring the water and chicken broth to a boil.

Add frozen spinach. Allow to boil for 5 minutes.

Next, add the black pepper and Salt.

Now add the meatballs back into the soup.

Add the freshly grated Parmesan Cheese.

And last but not least, add the Tripoline. Allow to boil for another 5 minutes

Then …. Mangiamo!!

Stay cozy and warm this weekend with this zuppa … and maybe share with your nona 😉

xoxox

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Baby Tomato Antipasto Salad

Kiddos …

This recipe isn’t deep-fried.

It isn’t drenched in barbecue sauce.

There isn’t gooey cheese … and it doesn’t involve using beer to complete the recipe (although, who says you can’t enjoy a nice cold beer with a meal ?!?! :))

It’s not even finger food to be honest.

But it’s delicious. And it’s fresh. It’s loaded with veggies. And the word Antipasto makes me feel a little Italian (pretty much my lifelong dream)

It’s delicious and if you want, you can make this along with all your yummy goodies for Superbowl sunday.

Orrr …. I have a wicked-good idea!!

How about you make this salad today – – load up on it until Sunday and then go carb-cheese-anything&everything deep fried  crazy come Game Day 🙂

Genius huh? – – I’m all for balance 😉

I’ll be honest – – that’s my plan annd I caaannn’ttt waaaaiiiiittt!!

I have to be honest though … I don’t know a single thing about football. I don’t know who’s playing this weekend ( I over heard someone say something about the patriots … mmmyea… okay, that sounds good – – don’t yell at me if im wrong). I don’t know what end zone means … nor where any of the players are supposed to run.

On the other hand …

I know it’s good to get a touch down and I know there will be amazing food on sunday. But until then, I shall chow down on this deliciousness until it’s wing day

– care to join me ?

Baby Tomato Antipasto Salad

4 Containers of Baby Tomatoes ( approximately 6 cups)

1 Cup Black Kalamata Olives

1 Cup Pimento Stuffed Manzanilla Olives

1 Cup Marinated Artichokes

1 Cup Roasted Red Peppers – chopped

2 Cups Small Pearl Bocchini cheese

5 Cloves of garlic – minced

1/3 Cup Fresh Parsley

1/3 Cup Fresh Thyme

1/3 Cup Fresh Rosemary

1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

3 Tbsp Sea Salt

3 Tbsp Black Pepper

Directions:

In a large bowl, add all of the the ingredients.

Mix well and ….

Eat’em up or refrigerate until you’re ready to mangia!!

Buon appetito Sweet Hearts!!

xoxox