I took a few liberties to make it my own of course, subbed Kale instead of Escarole (I love escarole but the kale looked good, was handy and on sale), I used white beans instead of orzo (better option in terms of more protein), and I used both thigh and breast meat ground turkey instead of all white meat.
Here is what I used:
- 1/2 lb ground white meat turkey
- 1/2lb ground dark (thigh) meat turkey
- 1/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 garlic cloves (minced)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons parsley
- 1 large carrot
- 1 bunch kale
- 2 32oz boxes of chicken stock
In a mixing bowl whisk the egg with a couple tablespoons of water and then add the breadcrumbs and let it all soak together for a few minutes so it becomes somewhat of a paste. Then add the salt, pepper, parsley, garlic and Parmesan cheese. Give that a good mix (SK didn't mention doing that first but that's how I did it and it worked for me before adding the turkey meat). Next, mix it all together with the turkey meat, both light and dark meat.
Form the mixture into golf ball sized meatballs and place them on a baking sheet to cool. I would say this made about 24 meatballs for me, I used most of them in the soup and ended up cooking the last 6 of them in the oven as an experiment on the side.
Place the meatballs in the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes.
While they're chilling dice the carrot and add it with the chicken broth to a large pot and bring to a boil. At this point I added a little salt, pepper, crushed dried basil, and a few bay leafs and then let it simmer for about 20 minutes while the meatballs were still chilling. I also took that time to chop up the kale.
Once the meatballs were ready I put them in the simmering broth one by one with a large spoon and let them cook through for about 10 minutes. Then I added the rinsed drained white beans and kale and let the whole thing simmer lightly for another 10-15 minutes until the meatballs were thoroughly cooked through.
I served it up pipping hot topped with a liberal sprinkle of grated Parmesan which added a wonderful extra nutty saltiness.
It was so Dahlicious and really quite simple yet made totally from scratch (besides the stock). It felt hearty and filling but incredible light and healthful with all those veggies and lean protein. Not to mention, the extra meatballs I popped in the oven at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes - they were perfect. The meatballs have a really nice silky texture and proved to be quite flavorful - I would definitely recommend trying this one out - Enjoy!