September 15, 2011


I don't want to see Summer come to an end, but there are telltale signs that it's doing just that. We've been having temperatures in the high 80's and low 90's here in Havre, Montana, but on Tuesday it was cloudy and chilly with a high temp of only 63. Add to that, the honkers have been flying overhead and there are a few fallen leaves on the ground; a sure sign that Autumn is near. 

I'm one of those people who can't really enjoy a nice hot bowl of soup unless the weather is cooperating... that is, cold or rainy days when a simmering pot of soup on the stove helps to warm the kitchen and then our bellies.
So, on Tuesday when the temperature dipped, I was all over having soup for dinner. With plenty of zucchini on the counter and a few ripe tomatoes from our garden, I decided to make Albondigas.
Albondigas  (al-BON-dee-gahs) means meatball in Spanish. So, what we have here basically, is Spanish meatball soup. 

This was  made with homemade chicken stock, zucchini, tomatoes and tiny meatballs which I made with ground beef. Cilantro, cumin and a dash of lemon juice round out the flavors in this soup. I cooked some tortillas and this was a perfect meal for a chilly day. 


1# lean ground beef
1 egg
4 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 tsp ground cumin

4 cups chicken stock
2 cups boiling water
1 cube Knorr Caldo de Tomate (tomato bouillon with chicken flavor
½ medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 medium carrot, sliced into rounds
¼ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp oregano
1 large zucchini, sliced
½ cup cooked rice
1 T lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped cilantro to taste

Combine all ingredients for the meatballs and roll into small balls. You should get 24-28 meatballs from a pound of ground beef.

Brown meatballs in a frying pan with some olive oil. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.

In a soup pan, add some olive oil and sauté celery, onions and carrot for 5 minutes. Add chicken stock, water, tomato bouillon,  cumin and oregano.

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Add meatballs and zucchini. Simmer gently until meatballs and zucchini are cooked, 10-15 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice.

Ladle Albondigas into soup bowls and garnish with chopped cilantro and cooked rice.


  1. This looks so good. Today's high is to be 62 degrees!! I could use a bowl.


  2. Beautiful...and you made it sound so easy. Thanks

  3. Different but looks good Dear Karen.


  4. It's so pretty. I love your pics. Zuchinni from your garden? I think browning the meatballs makes all the difference in this soup.

  5. i am so sad to see the weather change but I do welcome the change in foods. Soup is such a comfort food, filling and warm. A great way to use zucchini!

  6. This soup looks so delicious, Karen. I'm with you about preferring soup on cool days. It was 97 degrees for last weeks farmers market and the temp probably won't reach 70 degrees for tomorrows so I'll be thinking soup soon.

  7. I chuckle every time I see the word "albondigas" as I swear it was the first word I learned in Spanish class, that is right after, "Hola Isabel!"

  8. I've been trying to make a lot of transitional meals as well! This is a great blend of fall and summer!

  9. This looks so good.
    Love your photos!
    I am making a cake/loaf today from my new cook book. Amazing sounding recipes in here. Thank you again.

  10. Wow! Karen that sopa de albondigas looks mouthwatering . Just yesterday my neighbor came
    to asked me about this soup.

    I love it with mint.

    You pictures are awesome!


  11. I'm loving that it's soup season. We're in Estes Park this a.m. and it's 37 degrees, so I'm thinking this Albondigas looks really good. I've made it once and love it. Beautiful photos Karen. Love that squash blossom header.

  12. I have been making more soups to make me love fall even more- I wish summer did not have to end since I love being at home with my kiddos and no schedule!

  13. Love it! Can’t wait to try it, I’ve been totally obsessed with soups and stews lately.I love albóndigas and this soup sounds delicious!

  14. Oh, I almost made Albondigas Soup this past week, but went with the Italian version instead. This looks great and I know I'll be making a version soon. So hard to resist!

  15. Hi... i want to make Albondigas Soup... and now i found new one here.. thank you...

  16. Gosh this looks good - you always take the best photos.

  17. Hey... how about adding some maccaroni?? i'd like to havin' one pieces thats soup today... Throught u'r receipe.. Thanks...


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