During this quarantine, I've been home with my big Italian family, which means everyone has a big appetite and an even bigger opinion. My mom is a good cook, but I've cringed while watching her cut onions horribly wrong for so long. So, I stepped up to the plate to feed not only my immediate family but also my nana who is quarantined across town in her home.
All the meals I've been making are classics I grew up on, such as baked ziti, chicken marsala, lasagna, braised short ribs, meatballs and more. Real stick-to-your-ribs kind of food. I'm also testing some new recipes like Guinness beef stew, potato pancakes and chicken roulades with fontina, spinach and Parmesan to mix it up a bit.
It can be a challenge to plan meals for anywhere from 5 to 8 people every night, but I think I've managed to handle it well (so far). I'm not taking major risks in the kitchen with recipes that are fussy and require a bunch of ingredients because I don't have those resources right now and my family wouldn't enjoy eating them anyway.
I think we're all searching for a sense of normalcy and comfort during all this and I'm trying to provide that to my family through cooking.
Italian wedding soup is great for feeding a large crowd in a short amount of time. I love this recipe because it's super comforting and pretty simple to make. I put my own twist on the classic soup: Instead of simmering the meatballs in the broth, I brown them in a skillet first to build more flavor. It may not be traditional, but it's how I roll. You can skip this step, but you'll be cutting yourself short on extra flavor, so I suggest taking the time to do this!
Freezing tip: I would freeze it in plastic quart containers because that’s typically what I have on hand. Also, be sure that the soup has cooled down to room temperature; you can do this by putting the soup in an ice bath to bring the temperature down quickly. If you don’t have quart containers, you can also freeze the soup in large zip-top bags and lay them flat on a tray in the freezer; they will take up less space that way.
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