Thursday, January 24, 2013

Budget-Friendly Meals: Zesty Mexican Meatball Soup

Soup can be such a comforting and delicious way to end a hard day.  A satisfying combination of zesty mexican style meatballs, corn, black beans, and peppers come together to warm you from the inside out.

Meatball Ingredients:

1 pound of ground turkey
1/2 sweet onion
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon taco seasoning
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 egg
1/2 cup plain panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup cilantro

Soup Ingredients:
1 anaheim pepper (this is a fairly mild pepper, if you so choose, you could use a hotter pepper in place of this one)
1 green bell pepper
1/2 sweet onion
1 cup carrots
1 1/2 teaspoon jarred garlic
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
32 ounces beef broth
2 cups water
1 can black beans
1 can corn
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
cooked meatballs

Meatball Steps:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Take the sweet onion and chop it into chunks.

Place them all in the blender and puree.

Take the cilantro and tear it into pieces.

In a large bowl, combine the turkey, 1/2 of the onion puree, olive oil, the spices, the egg, bread crumbs, and cilantro.

Make sure everything is mixed together well.  I used my hands to do this.

Pinch off 1 teaspoon of the meat mixture, and roll it into a ball (your meatballs could be made smaller or larger if you choose.)  Repeat this for the rest of the mixture.

Coat a glass baking dish with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

Place the rolled meatballs in the glass dish.

Drizzle the tops with olive oil.

Place in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes.  Rotate the meatballs using a large spoon, and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Place the finished meatballs in an airtight container, and store in the refrigerator until you are ready to make your soup.

Soup Steps:

Cut the top off of the anaheim pepper, and split the pepper lengthwise, and pull all of the seeds out.

Chop the pepper into thin slices.

Do the same with the bell pepper.

Cut the carrots into small pieces.

In a large skillet, heat up 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil.

After a couple of minutes, add the veggies (don't forget the other 1/2 of the sweet onion in the blender,) the garlic, a dash of salt, and a dash of ground cumin to the skillet.

Saute for about 15 minutes.

In a large stock pot over low heat, combine the beef broth, the water, the can of black beans (I didn't drain these,) the can of corn (I did drain this,) the spices, the veggies, and the prepared meatballs.

Let simmer for 2 hours.

Top this delicious soup with some tortilla strips, and you've got a winner that your family will be sure to ask you to make again and again!

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