BFF + frosting + sprinkles = a really great day


Head over to Sandra’s for Cooking Thursday. She has an Oven Chicken and Rice dish today that is naturally gluten free, as long as you be sure to use a gluten free chourico and beef broth.  It sounds great!  Thanks, Sandra!


Come back tomorrow for the February 2010 Once a Month Mom Gluten & Dairy Free Dinner adaptions.  Remember the gluten and dairy free versions count for the Once a Month Mom Cook Off!  Woo-hoo!

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To make this a really easy soup to pull together, I usually use meatballs I have made ahead for this.  When I make my meatballs, 1/3 of the meatballs are made into mini-meat balls, just because they are fun to have around.  If you have them, use them.  If not, just use big sized meatballs.

If you do not already have premade meatballs, you can mix them up just before you start the rest of your soup using the below recipe.



1 pound ground beef, pork or turkey (or a combo of the meats)

1 egg (or use 1 T ground flax mixed with 3 T hot water)

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup dry gluten and dairy free bread crumbs

3 Tablespoons fresh parsley, finely minced

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground pepper

Mix all ingredients together well.  I use my hands.  Using about 1 level tablespoon of mixture, roll mixture into balls.

You can cook the meatballs in a lightly oiled skillet, or bake them in the oven at 350 degrees until they are cooked through.  You can also drop the meatballs as you shape them into your simmering soup, as a meat dumpling that cooks right in the broth.  If dropping into soup uncooked, be sure to use very lean meat to make your mixture.  Cover soup after last meatball is added and allow to simmer for at least 10 minutes until meatball is cooked through.



Mini-Meatball Soup

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped carrots

1 cup chopped celery

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 cups kale, washed, ribs/stems removed, sliced thin

6 cups gluten free beef stock

28 oz crushed fire roasted tomatoes

2 Tablespoons tomato paste

2 bay leaves

1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning

1 ¼  pounds mini meatballs, or make mixture above

2 medium small summer squash (yellow or zucchini), quartered and ¼” slices

1 cup gluten free shell pasta

¼ cups fresh parsley, minced

salt and pepper, to taste

Heat oil in a large soup pan over medium-high heat.  Add onion, carrots and celery to pan, cooking until onion is translucent.  Add garlic, stirring and allowing to cook for 1 minute.  Add kale, stock, tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaves and Italian seasoning to pan.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to a simmer.

Add pasta, and summer squash.  Stir.  Add meatballs.  If meatballs are frozen, stir.  If meatballs are uncooked, gently drop individually into soup.  Gently fold uncooked meatballs into broth as needed to ensure all meatballs are in the broth for even cooking.  Cover pan, allowing soup to simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove lid, stir in parsley.  Taste soup and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper, as needed.  Serve.

To make in slow cooker: Do not use the olive oil.  Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic, kale, beef stock, tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaves, and Italian seasoning to slow cooker.  If using frozen meatballs, you can also add now.  Stir.  If using uncooked meatballs, add one at a time to top of liquid after stirring.  Cover crock and on low for about 8 hours until carrots are tender and meatballs are cooked through.  About ½ hour before the end of cooking time, add summer squash and gluten free pasta.  Cook for another ½ hour until pasta is tender.  Stir in parsley and add salt and pepper, if needed.