Italian wedding soup is one of my absolute favorite soups. I sometimes make a lazy version using Fieldroast Italian sausages but today I felt motivated to roll up a million(48) tiny meatballs. Rolling "meat" made from plants was actually a little therapeutic. Once the balls are rolled up, the rest is pretty simple. Enjoy.
1 Tbsp ground flax seeds
1 lb ground plant-based meat
1/3 cup vegan bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1.5 tsp Italian seasoning (or 3/4 tsp each dried oregano & basil)
1/2 cup finely shredded vegan parmesan
2-3 carrots, chopped
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup white wine (optional)
8 cups 'no chicken' flavored vegetable broth
1 cup Acini Di Pepe pasta
6 cups fresh spinach, chopped
1. In a small bowl wisk together ground flax seeds with 3 Tbsp water. Set aside 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine plant-based ground meat, flax seed mixture, bread crumbs, parsley, vegan parmesan, Italian seasonings, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Using your hands mix until ingredients evenly distributed. Roll into very small meatballs, approximately 48 balls. **make ahead- place meatballs in refrigerator until ready to bake. Or bake them and refrigerate in a sealed container until ready to make the soup.
3. Bake meatballs for 15 to 18 minutes. Set aside.
4. While meatballs are baking, place a stockpot over medium-high heat with 1 Tbsp oil. Sauté onions, carrots and celery for 5 to 6 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper. Stir in garlic and continue to saute another 1 minute. Add white wine (optional) simmer for 1 to 2 minutes to allow alchohol to burn off. Add chicken flavored vegetable broth. Bring to boil. Add Acini Di Pepe pasta. Boil uncovered 9 minutes stirring occasionally.
5. Add cooked meatballs to soup along with spinach. Return to low boil for 2 minutes, or until spinach wilted. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper.
6. Serve in bowls topped with additional vegan parmesan cheese.