Monday, February 13, 2012

Mexican-Style Turkey [Jumbo] Meatball Soup

Last night, here in Georgia, we witnessed very frigid temperatures! Georgia's weather has been pretty insane lately. We've been having very warm, Spring-like weather for a few weeks so when temperatures dropped last night, I knew I had to make some sort of soup. I decided to make turkey meatball soup since I had ground turkey thawing. This was my first time making turkey meatball soup and second time ever working with ground turkey (first time was chili- yum!). The soup turned out pretty scrumptious! This is a very hearty soup and leaves you feeling very satisfied. Not to mention, it is figure friendly! The meatballs came out to be pretty big, hence the name. I did not have corn at home so I left it out (usually I add corn on the cob to soups). You can also add chayote which is Mexican squash which I'm not crazy about but many add this as well. If you asked me to describe it, I'd say it looks very similar to a Guava (growing up, my mother would always stop me from biting into a chayote thinking it was a delicious guava). Anyhow, so why is it "Mexican-style" you might ask? Well, for a very simple reason, I infused the broth with Mexican flavors. I can not make a soup without adding whole cloves, garlic (and plenty of it!), whole cumin, whole peppercorns, and oregano. My family and I LOVE garlic! My husband is Korean and they eat garlic like it's candy! I always liked garlic growing up, but I must admit that since my husband and I got married, I eat about twice as much garlic! So if you aren't crazy about garlic, I suggest you put less of it and not omit it, as it is the source of  so much flavor! This is what you will need:

For the meatballs:
2 lbs ground turkey
1/4 cup uncooked brown rice (you can use white, I just use brown to boost up the fiber)
3/4 cup breadcrumbs (I make this myself with whole grain bread)
2 medium eggs or 1 jumbo egg
1/2 cup of finely diced onions
1/2 roma tomato finely diced
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tbsp salt
2 pinches of dried oregano

For the soup:
1/4 cup of thickly sliced onions
3, 1/2 roma tomatoes (diced but not too small)
5 potatoes
5 medium sized carrots
5 cloves of garlic (I told you I loved garlic!)
3 whole cloves
1 pinch of whole cumin
3 whole black peppercorns
1 chicken bouillon 
1 tsp of salt or more, depending on your taste (just remember that the bouillon has salt too)
9 cups of water, plus 1/4 for the blender
a bunch of cilantro

You will need two pots, a smaller one for the vegetables, and a larger one for the meatballs.

1.In a large mixing bowl, add all the ingredients for the meatballs and mix well to thoroughly combine every ingredient.

2.In the larger pot, add 7 cups of water and set on medium heat until it comes to a boil.

3.Meanwhile, start making the meatballs with your palms and make sure they are all about the same size so they can cook uniformly. 

4. Once the water has come to a boil, add half of the bouillon, the sliced onions, 2 largely diced tomatoes, and the salt and lower the heat a bit. Stir to dissolve the bouillon.

5. Start adding the meatballs one by one very carefully. Make sure you don't take too long, as they will not cook uniformly. Cover and leave on medium heat.

6. Add the other 2 cups of water to the smaller pot and set on medium heat.

7. While the water warms up, wash, peel and cube the carrots and potatoes into 1 inch pieces.

8. Once the water is hot, add the other half of the bouillon and a pinch of salt. 

9. Add the carrots and the 1, 1/2 diced tomato to the smaller pot and cover. Let it cook for about 4 minutes.

10. In a blender, add the 5 cloves of garlic, pinch of cumin, 3 peppercorns, 3 cloves and 1/4 cup of water.

11. Add 1/3 of the blended mixture into the vegetable pot, 2/3 in the meatball pot. 

12. Add the potatoes to the vegetable pot (the reason why: potatoes cook faster than carrots so you want to let the carrots cook a bit before integrating the potatoes so they're both cooked perfectly at the end). Cover and cook on medium-low heat until the vegetables are cooked perfectly, about 15 minutes. Then remove from heat.

13.Once the meatballs are cooked thoroughly, taste and add salt if needed. Remove from stove. 

14. Wash the bunch of cilantro, chop it finely, stems and leaves, and add to the meatball pot. 

15. Serve in a bowl, veggies and meatballs together. Enjoy with lime, cilantro and diced onion, and diced raw jalapeños for a little kick! I also serve it with tortillas. Store bought is fine, just pick a yummy brand. My husband and I both prefer La Providencia. 

If you feel like making your own, homemade tortillas, that is even better! I usually do homemade for stews but I was too lazy (and cold!) to do them so we ate store bought. The hubby actually really likes this brand so that makes me feel better about not making homemade this time around. 

  The final product: A yummy, aromatic, and hearty soup!

Lime, plenty of diced onions and cilantro to go around, and diced raw jalapeño (for the bold).


  1. Leftover turkey meatball sopa also makes for a great lunch the next day! I put more onions in mine and it was deliciouso. Koreans also eat onion like candy lol

    1. Haha! I just ate leftover meatball soup as well :) 'Tis very yummy with raw onions and jalapeños! ^.^