Mini Meatball Stew
- 1 slice white sandwich bread, torn into small pieces
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- One 8 to 10-ounce russet potato, peeled, halved lengthwise and halved lengthwise again, sliced into 1/3-inch slices
- 1 can green beans, drained
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced in rounds
- Two 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes, drained
- 1 cup tomato juice (I saved what I drained from the diced tomatoes)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
- 1-1/2 cups chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated + a little for garnish
Place the bread and 3 tablespoons water into a medium bowl. Mash bread very finely. Add the beef, egg, parsley, salt and pepper. Blend the mixture thoroughly with your hands or a fork.
Form the mixture into mini meatballs (I made about 35-40 with 1 pound of beef). Arrange the meatballs on a greased baking sheet.
Cook in a 400 degree oven until the doneness that you like (anywhere from 8-18 minutes).
Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions, peppers, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper. Cook until soft, 4 minutes.
Push the pepper and onions to the outside and place potatoes in the center of the bottom.
Place the carrots, beans, and tomatoes on top of potatoes. Add the red pepper flakes, chicken broth, and the tomato juice. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer.
Add the cooked meatballs. Make a roux with the butter and flour and drop in the soup in little pieces. (This way you won’t have clumping of flour in the stew, when the butter melts the flour also melts into the stew and helps thicken the broth.)
Cover the pan with the lid and simmer until the potatoes and carrots are tender, about 30 minutes.
Now sprinkle in a 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese. When cheese has melted in, mix and serve.
Garnish the top of each bowl with a little grated parmesan cheese.