26 September 2009

Lamb Meatball Soup with Lentils

Despite the fact that it's the end of September, summer has decided to stick around. The temperature has been in the 80s and 90s, but the mere utterance of the word 'fall' makes me incredibly happy. When the leaves start to turn orange, only one thing can be eaten in my household: soup. Ian hadn't been feeling particularly well, so this was the perfect time to trot out a new comfort recipe that I'm happy to say will be a staple once the colder months set in.

I've been wanting to make this recipe from Foodmayhem for quite awhile, but I haven't had any ground turkey on hand, and I had to use the ground lamb up before I could even think about buying more meat. I followed this recipe exactly using the lamb, and the only changes I made were low sodium bacon and I added 1/2 cup of lentils to the soup in the last 25 minutes of cooking. The result was fantastic.

I'm reprinting the original recipe below but have renamed it to reflect the changes I made.

Lamb Meatball Soup with Lentils
(adapted from Foodmayhem)

2 strips low-sodium bacon, cut into 1" pieces
3 1/2 cup leek rings
1 1/4 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cup diced carrots
4 cups chicken broth
4 cups water
1/2 cup lentils, rinsed and soaked

For the meatballs:

1 1/2 pounds ground lamb
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
1 cup chopped onion
5 cloves garlic minced
1 egg
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat a large dutch oven over high flame. Add the bacon and stir until it gives off fats.
2. Stir in the leek and onion and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in carrots and cook for another 2 minutes. Add broth and water and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. While the soup is cooking, make the meatballs. Mix ground meat with bread crumbs, onion, garlic, and egg. Season with salt and pepper. Form 1 1/2″ balls (makes about 43).
5. Heat a large skillet with the vegetable oil and brown the meatballs on all sides (they don’t need to be cooked through). Place them in the soup along with the lentils, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook covered for another 20 minutes.


Jessica@FoodMayhem said...

Yum. Why didn't I think of lentils?

EMC said...

The local farm cooperatives around here have led to my swimming in lentils, so I've been sneaking them into everything, including cookies!

Thanks for the yummy recipe; the leeks and bacon really made this one fantastic.