Monday, March 9, 2009

Meatloaf soup

For the last two weeks, I have been feeling.....blecky. Runs the gamut of stomach ache, to chills, to nauseous. Just not on my A game. After a wonderful night with our friends, I came home still not feeling well. Sunday was a waste of a day. I kept walking around the house picking up some laundry, then sitting down. Did some dishes, sat down. Took a nap, sat down-tired from the nap you know? The hubs went in for OT and I totally slept through him leaving, so he was on his own for dinner. I did notice the hot dogs and buns were missing, so that must have been in the lunch box. As I was perusing the fridge-which I had just cleaned out Saturday morning-there wasn't much in there. Eggs, cheese, milk, condiments, OJ, kids' leftovers, some veggies at the end of their lives, and a 2 pound chub of ground beef I had gotten on sale on Thursday. Normally I buy 80/20 because I like a little fat to keep burgers and meatloaf moist, but it was a good deal so I picked up the 93/7. As I was staring at it, I kept asking myself "what can I do with you, my little chub-o-beef?" I'm usually not one to just make up a dish. You would never guess by looking at my tornado-went-through-the-house-and-no one-wants-to-help-me-clean-it house, but I'm a little anal in the kitchen. I need a plan. A recipe. Some direction. Oh sure, I have jazzed up a recipe with another spice, or swapped out an ingredient that I know the family won't like-but never just made something up. I thought of all the awesome blogs I read and how these creations just seem to flow forth from them. What would they do? Probably come up with something so I awesome I would just drop my jaw. That didn't happen here, but it was actually quite good and didn't scare me away from trying to make something else up in the future. Here is what came about. Since I just did this on the fly, I don't really have concrete measurements, but I will guesstimate.

Meatloaf soup

2 pounds ground beef
1 cup chicken flavored stuffing mix, crushed
1 box plus one can beef broth (can not shown)
2 carrots
2 stalks celery
grated onion, about 3 tablespoons
1 red pepper
ketchup and mustard (not shown)
pasta of your choice-this was the hardest for me: pasta or potatoes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grind up your stuffing mix in blender. Pour crumbs into a bowl. Cover with about 1/2 cup of beef broth. Add about 2 TBSP ketchup and mustard. Stir to combine. Break meat into clumps and drop in bowl. Grate about 3 TBSP of onion over the top and grate half a carrot into bowl also.

Using hands, fold all ingredients in to incorporate.

Using a small cookie scoop, make uniform meatballs and place on cookie sheet. I got about 28 meatballs. Roast in oven for 25 minutes. Rotate pans from upper to lower racks about halfway through cooking time.

While meatballs are baking, slice up the carrots, celery and pepper and drop into a Dutch oven with a little butter and oil.

Stir occasionally so veggies will soften.

When meatballs are done, pour remaining broth from can and the full box into the Dutch oven. Carefully move the meatballs from the cookie sheet to the pot. I saved about 8 meatballs for my daughter in case she wasn't feeling adventurous. Simmer on stove for about 40 minutes. Stir in pasta of your choice. I used the small rings that you normally use for salads. I let it go about another 15 to 20 minutes. The rings got much bigger than I expected and soaked up a lot of the broth, so next time I need to use less (I think I poured in about a two thirds cup of rings). Serve with some nice crusty bread which I didn't have any of.

Result? Pretty good. I think it needed more seasoning. I did throw a little salt and pepper in after putting meatballs in the soup. I wanted to make it first without seasoning since there are seasonings in the stuffing mix and didn't want them to be overwhelming in case I guessed wrong. Maybe a little cheese or bacon in the meatballs? The meatballs stayed very tender.

Oh, I called it meatloaf soup since I put all the ingredients in the meatballs that I normally put in my meatloaf.

Off to frost a cake-nothing homemade, just out of the Pillsbury box. But yellow cake and chocolate frosting might make me feel better! Then off to work. Long week this week, so will probably cook on Weds and Thurs this week to get some stuff up.
More snow coming. I just want to wear short sleeves and put on my flip flops and wash my car. Sigh.


Nate-n-Annie said...

That's a neat adaptation, turning meatloaf into soup using the same ingredients.

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noble pig said...

Okay that turned out cute! Love the noodles too!

Heather said...

i really like that you spoke to your "chub-o-beef"! that cracked me up ;)
i think this soup sounds delicious, btw. i love meatballs.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

Girl, if yellow cake and chocolate frosting do not make you feel better, then it's time to hang it up!

Donna-FFW said...

Fantastic creation. I am so glad to know I am not the onlyone who talks to myself in the kitchen. Tell me, do your cabinets answer you back also? .. Kidding.
Awesome idea with the soup! It certainly looks delicious!

Bob said...

Ha! Chub-o-beef. Heh.

That looks wicked good! See? Just tossing something together in the kitchen is a good time. :)

Katherine Aucoin said...

That is a very creative soup that looks so scrumptuous! You are amazing and I hope you're feeling better!

Happy cook said...

You have such a woonderful blog and i love the soup, it is excelent for the rainy and cold weather we are having here.

Spryte said...

I love soup! That looks so good right about now!!

Pam said...

Looks and sounds like a tasty soup to me...

Yellow cake and chocolate frosting are sure to make anyone feel better.

Hope you are on the mend!