Zuppa Maritata

Mayor Ed Koch had a slight stroke while he was mayor of New York City and while lying bedridden at Gracie Mansion, he heard that he had[ a visitor. He was soon shocked to learn that Mother Teresa had come to call. He leaped up and put on a bathrobe, saying, "Mother, what are you doing here?" Mother Teresa answered, "You need your friends when you are sick." In honor of friendship, healing, Mother Teresa, and Ed Koch, here is a true comfort soup that bridges all lands and creeds.]

Total Time:
35 min
10 min
25 min

6 or 8 servings

  • 1/4 cup minced green onions, with tops
  • 1/2 cup minced mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crumbled dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 6 cups brown chicken stock, made with extra oregano and garlic
  • 1/4 pound vermicelli, broken
  • 1 recipe Chicken Balls, cooked, recipe follows, or 1 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 6 tablespoons freshly grated Romano, plus extra for garnish
  • Salt, black pepper and minced fresh oregano
  • Dash paprika
  • Minced fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • Saute the green onions and mushrooms in the oil until soft, sprinkle with the cayenne pepper, salt, oregano, and lemon juice while cooking. Add the stock, bring to a boil and stir in the vermicelli.

  • Cook for 7 minutes after the soup comes back to a boil. Reheat with Chicken Balls or diced chicken.

  • Beat together the eggs and half-and-half, whisk in 1/2 cup hot soup and return to the rest of the soup. Heat, but do not boil.

  • Add the Romano and adjust seasonings, to taste, with salt, pepper and oregano.

  • Sprinkle with paprika and Italian parsley and pass extra Romano at the table.

Chicken Balls:
  • 1 1/2 cups ground white-meat chicken

  • 2 tablespoons finely minced fresh parsley leaves

  • 1 egg, beaten

  • 1/2 cup fine bread crumbs

  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated Romano

  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper

  • Mix together all ingredients, form into balls the size of large marbles, and refrigerate several hours. Cook in simmering salted water or broth to cover for 10 minutes.

  • Yield: 40 balls

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • Cook Time: 20 minutes

  • Inactive Prep Time: 3 hours

  • Ease of preparation: easy

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