Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Chicken and Egg Noodle Soup with Veal Meatballs


Having a bowl of this soup is the food equivalent of taking a hot bath. At first, it's a little too hot to be able to just jump in. But it's too tempting to leave while it cools to a more sensible temperature, so you risk a toe. Slowly. slowly, hoping not to scald yourself, you inch yourself in until you are enveloped in a soothing elixir that's almost too hot to handle... Delicious. Now go and make this soup... and then take a bath.

Chicken and Egg Noodle Soup with Veal Meatballs
slightly adapted from Food Network
Serves 8

For the Soup:
1kg whole chicken
Sea salt flakes
2 cloves
4 litres water
1kg beef morrow bones
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1cm rounds
2 stalks celery with leaves, inner pieces from the bunch peeled of outer skin, cut into 1cm pieces
1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
Freshly cracked white pepper
1 small bunch fresh thyme
1 bay leave 

For the Meatballs:
250g ground veal
1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs

200g dried egg noodles
3 cups loosely packed spinach leaves, washed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan

Make the Soup:
Season the chicken with salt and push the 2 cloves into 1 of the chicken thighs. Add it to a large stock pot, cover with about 4 litres of cold water and bring to a simmer over medium heat.

Meanwhile, season the beef bones with salt and brown them in a frying pan with the canola oil, searing them over medium heat. Add them to the pot with the chicken. To the pan that the bones were seared in, over medium heat, add the carrots, celery and onion and toss until they are coated in oil. Add the thyme and bay leaf to the stock pot along with the sauteed vegetables. Bring the soup to a gentle simmer and skim the surface with a ladle. Discard any oil or "scum" that accumulates. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and lower the heat to finish cooking the chicken slowly.

Make the Meatballs: 
Put the ground veal into a medium bowl. Add the salt, garlic, Parmesan, basil, egg and bread crumbs. Use your hands to mix to blend the ingredients. Roll the veal mixture into small meatballs. They should be about the size of a small cherry tomato. Arrange the meatballs in a single layer on a baking sheet and refrigerate.

After about 45 minutes at a gentle simmer, taste the chicken soup and adjust the seasoning, if needed. Use a large spoon and a pair of tongs to remove the chicken to a baking tray and allow it to cool for a few minutes. Remove the beef bones and scoop out the marrow. Add it to the soup, if desired. Remove and discard the fresh thyme and bay leaves. Take the breast and thigh meat off the chicken, taking care to discard the bones and skin. Break the chicken into bite-size pieces, but not too small, and add them to the soup.

Bring the soup to a gentle simmer and add the meatballs. Allow it to continue simmering for a couple of minutes so the meatballs have a chance to cook. Add the noodles stirring gently. Stir in the spinach and taste for seasoning. Transfer the soup to serving bowls and serve sprinkled with the Parmesan.


  1. We are close to summer here but I will keep this recipe in mind for when it begins to get cooler. I often burn my tongue because I dive in head first.

  2. My type of soup all the way!!! In Quebec these days, the sun is there but the temperature is quite low. I could make this so warm us up :)

  3. Aw yum... it's definitely chicken soup weather over here at the moment. Yours looks like a nourishing bowl of deliciously warm comfort! Love the pictures as always. Thanks for this gorgeous recipe xx

  4. Thanks Little Kitchie - total comfort food.

  5. Hey Gabrielle. You should make this soup before your weather get too warm. It's great for warming you up from the inside, out.

  6. Thanks Laura, and you're welcome. The chill in the air here is enough to make me want to put my fuzzy slippers on and slurp this soup night after night.

  7. You're gonna love this Patty. I think I spend most of winter walking around with a scalded mouth.