Wednesday, January 28, 2009

O Solo Mio!

As we live in New Jersey, and specifically because we live in the county with the highest population of Italians, and even more specifically because I love my crockpot, and even even more more specifically because Progresso Soup was on sale a few weeks ago--I decided to make crock pot Italian Wedding Soup after enjoying the Progresso stuff but realizing that it looked like a really easy soup to make.

I just kinda winged it based on what I found on the internets and the can of Progresso Soup.

The most important part of the soup?

The balls.

Isn't it always the balls?

First I took half a pound of snausage--Parks Sausage to be exact--the first black-owned company to go public in 1969. But this post isn't about race and history, it's about hope snausage.

I minced some garlic.


Gathered up some breadcrumbs (about 1 slice of dried bread, crumbed of course).


And procured some familial herbs--basil from Mom, and oregano from the good old Pot Garden.


I mixed it all together and made little 1/2 inch meatballs.


Mmm...greasy balls!

I boiled the balls for 10 minutes.


This helped get rid of a lot of the grease from the snausage. The grease did help keep the snausage balls in spherical form quite well though. If I had used a leaner meat (beef, etc.) I would have probably used an egg in the mixture to keep it all together.

I also made the balls the day before and stuck 'em in the refrigerator.

On the day of the crockpot all I did was dump my balls into the crock along with some carrots and nicely cut spinach.


I forgot to take a picture of the spinach.

I added 6 cups of chicken broth (or in my case 5 1/2 teaspoons of chicken boullion and 6 cups of water--it's cheaper than chicken broth and easier to store) and I let it cook for 10 hours.

The last half hour of cooking I added some of these.


And it ended up looking like this in the end.


And served it with a wheat roll I whipped up.



When in New Jersey--eat like the New Jersians eat! Although I'll bet no on in Italy has ever heard of this soup before. Ha ha!



OpenID MarieGrace said...


Now I gotta go put balls in my crock pot!

6:39 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I'm proudly half-Italian (my dad's parents were born in Sicily and came to the U.S. as adults in the 1930's). My dad was a wonderful cook, and loved making Italian food, but never made Italian wedding soup, interestingly.

I've never liked soup though (yes, I'm weird!) unless it's a creamy potato-y soup, but that soup you made still looks pretty tasty! I see great minds think alike - I made meatballs last night too (but with spaghetti)! My dad made the most heavenly meatballs I've ever tasted. I really miss his cooking. : (

I don't know if Italians in Italy eat wedding soup, but I used to have a boss who was also Italian (his parents were immigrants) and he said most Italian food served at restaurants/sold in stores in the U.S. isn't authentic - just stuff that's made up for U.S. tastes.

7:15 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

P.S. I had never heard of Parks Sausage before now - that was interesting! Clevelanders must really like their sausages too, because there's a girl in my daughter's class at school whose family has owned a sausage shop for decades, and they make a pretty good living off it. It's in the inner city of Cleveland, but they get customers driving in from all over the suburbs to shop there.

7:18 AM  
Blogger Donna Lee said...

A little old Italian lady taught me to make that soup only I use ground turkey because it's less fat. It is easy and delicious.

7:20 AM  
Blogger Rebel said...

Bezzie - I want your balls!

7:26 AM  
Anonymous marymac said...

You bet right! My mother's from Italy and I've only ever had that out of a can, so I did some research a while back and turns out the name is a mistranslation of "wedded" as in "with ingredients that go well together". More here: . (Italian + librarianness = food trivia.)

Also good with escarole instead of spinach if it's on sale. And with beans (cannellini, usually), if you like 'em. Looks yummy!

7:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh! That looks really good.

Are those "Sweaty Balls"?

Love, Mom

8:45 AM  
Blogger Mag said...

Ditalini, only in New Jersey. You'd never find that product on the shelves out west. Lovely soup. I love a meatball.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Cindy in Happy Valley said...

I love Italian Wedding soup, but haven't made it in years. The last time I was creating my soup (recipe from, I opened my "pasta drawer", and a mouse scampered out!! Eeeek!!

Started the great mouse hunt 'rond these parts. Fortunately, we were able to round 'em up, and move 'em out, pretty easily. Put me off wedding soup though....

9:44 AM  
Blogger Rocky Moreno said...

I totally love the recipe share, and yes, it's always about the balls!

I'll make this very soon 8) Very similiar to Abondigas, a Mexican soup I make. Ever had that? If not, I'll make some and share it on my blog, it's crockpot friendly too, don't yah love crockpot friendlys meals? Pop it in before you go to work, come home to a yummy smelling home and dinner ready!

9:56 AM  
Blogger Carol said...

Most Italian recipes (including all the ones I cribbed off my Italian relatives) are along the lines of "throw in a dash of this. Add what looks like enough of that" etc. So your soup is just as Italian as anything else.

10:49 AM  
Blogger Jo said...

Looks yummy! I am seriously peeved that I get to work from home today and yet I have absolutely nothing defrosted that I can put in the crockpot. I'm going to make pizza dough instead and have pizza tonight instead.

10:54 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Yum! I make something similar, but with shredded chicken. I call it "Tuscan-Style Chicken soup", and I add beans. I had something like what I make at the Olive Garden (another "Americanized Italian restaurant ;), and figured I could reproduce it ... sort of ;).

I love soup.

And right now, it's snowing outside ... which makes it a good "soup" day :).

12:02 PM  
Blogger Penny Karma said...

I love it when you show us how to cook something and make it look easy enough that even Badcakes could do it.

1:11 PM  
Anonymous dbennett said...

I didn't like the part about boiling balls or how you spelled refrigerator. Is that newspaper editor hanging out with you these days?? :)


1:49 PM  
Blogger SiressYorkie said...

That actually looks really, really nice and very savory.


2:14 PM  
Blogger Kim said...

That looks so delicious! I didn't have balls in my crock pot this weekend but I did have a big juicy piece of meat in the crock pot (pot roast yum)

2:36 PM  
Blogger cpurl17 said...

Perhaps you have created the Jersey Wedding soup!

You do have tasty looking balls tho.

4:47 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

I'm not Italian at all, but most of my high school friends were Italian and I dig Italian food. Looks good!

5:10 PM  
Blogger Alisha said...

That looks so good!

6:45 PM  
Blogger Disco said...

WTF is with the 'snausage'?

I think you need to start a sidebar link to all your recipes. I'll never find that again!!!

8:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You domestic goddess. Everything looks yummy! Love, Aunt Susan

8:07 AM  
Blogger IrishgirlieKnits said...

You had me laughing at hope..I mean snausage!

I lost count of how many times you said balls too! hehehe

That soup looks delish!!

1:47 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

That looks way too easy. I need to whip out my crockpot...

8:07 AM  
Blogger Miss T said...


4:16 PM  

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