Thursday, October 6, 2011

Creamy Meatball Stew

I found this recipe over at Cassie Craves awhile ago when I was looking for recipes using frozen meatballs. She calls it a minestrone and uses some fresh vegetables, but I cut out a few steps to streamline the process.

I let the sauce simmer for a couple of hours to develop the flavor, and it also really thickened up. In fact, once the cream cheese is added, it was less stew and more casserole in consistency. I was a little unsure about the beans, but they were a nice addition; they're a good source of protein if you wanted to make this without the meatballs.

Ultimately, this was just a bowlful of comfort. I took a serving next door to my med school neighbor, who I imagine lives on frozen pizza and fast food, and he knocked back on my door within 10 minutes with a scraped-clean bowl.

Printable recipe

1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 pound frozen or fresh Italian meatballs 

1 26-ounce jar spaghetti sauce
32 ounces beef broth
8 ounces small uncooked pasta
8 ounces cream cheese, softened

Combine first six ingredients in large stockpot. Simmer until meatballs are warm/cooked through. Add pasta and simmer until cooked. Remove from heat and stir in cream cheese until melted. 

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