Chicken and basil meatball soup

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Serves: 4
Time to make: 1 hr 20 mins (Hands-on time: 20 mins, Cooking time: 60 mins), plus 1 hr chilling and 15 mins reheating
Total cost: $19.20 / $4.80 per serve

  • 350g chicken mince
  • 1 cup fresh wholegrain breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup basil leaves, chopped, plus extra, to serve
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled, finely chopped
  • 1 large desiree potato, peeled, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, trimmed, diced
  • 5 cups reduced-salt chicken stock
  • 1 x 400g can no-added-salt chopped tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups finely shredded savoy cabbage
  • 1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan, to serve
  • 4 small wholegrain bread rolls, to serve

Instructions

Step 1 Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Put chicken mince, breadcrumbs and basil in a large bowl; season with cracked black pepper and mix well. Wet hands, shape mince mixture into 16 small meatballs and place on prepared tray; cover and chill for 1 hour.

Step 2 Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium-high heat. Cook onion, stirring occasionally, for 3–4 minutes. Add garlic, potato, carrots and celery; cook veg, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add chicken stock and tomatoes, cover pan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer vegies, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes. Add cabbage, cover pan and simmer for another 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

Step 3 Increase heat to medium high. Add meatballs to soup and cook, gently stirring occasionally, for 10–12 minutes, or until meatballs are cooked through. Stir parsley and peas into soup; season with cracked black pepper. Simmer soup for 2 minutes, then leave to cool slightly. Transfer soup to an airtight container and freeze.

To reheat: Transfer soup to fridge to thaw for a day (or overnight). Spoon thawed soup into an 8-cup microwave-safe dish, cover and microwave on 70% power, stirring twice, for 12–15 minutes, until hot.

To serve: Ladle meatball soup into 4 bowls; top with extra basil, scatter with grated parmesan and serve with bread rolls.

Variations

Now freeze!

  • Who needs a freezer full of mysterious meals? Label containers with the name of the meal, the date you made it, and the number of serves.
  • Freeze various portion sizes. At some meals, you’ll be feeding the whole family, but for others (such as work lunches), you’ll need only a single portion.
  • Worried about freezer burn? Press all of the air out of freezer bags before sealing, and double-wrap your food – first in cling film and then with aluminium foil.

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