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Catalan Meatball Soup

Sopa De Albondiguillas Catalana

ingredients

serves 4 - 6
1.2 litres chicken stock
2 tablespoons tomato puree
4 tomatoes, skinned, deseeded and finely chopped
30 g fideos, a double handful (see note)
fine sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
mint leaves, to serve

meatballs

150 g minced pork
150 g minced veal
1 small onion, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fine freshly made breadcrumbs
a pinch of cinnamon
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
plain flour, for dusting
2 tablespoons olive oil, for frying

method

1. To make the meatballs, put the pork and veal mince in a bowl with the grated onion, garlic, egg, chopped mint and half the chopped parsley. Mix in the breadcrumbs, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix to a paste and form into 1.5 cm balls. Toss in flour until lightly coated.

2. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the balls over high heat to give a little colour and to firm them up a little.
To make the soup, put the stock in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the tomato puree, tomatoes, fideos noodles, salt and pepper.

3. Add the meatballs to the pan and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining parsley and serve with the mint leaves on top.

Note In Catalonia, the regional name for fideos is fideus. If you can't find this Spanish pasta, buy the broken vermicelli sold in Jewish delis for making chicken soup.

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