01 April 2011

Your Recipe ... My Kitchen - Victoria's Armenian Meatball Soup

thick and smooth tomato/chicken soup, succulent meatballs, chickpeas, and rice with just a hint of lemon and mint topped with a dollop of sour cream

I happened upon a new foodblog the other day while searching for a new soup to make for our weekly soup supper. Victoria over at  Mission : Food was featuring a tomato-based meatball soup that was so delicious looking that  I couldn't resist! Of course, I always have to play with recipes to make them 'my own', but in this case, very little needs to be done! This soup is just so hearty and delish! Compare the recipes and choose the one that suits your taste ... but, by all means, give this soup a try! It's wonderful!

At our house, every soup needs killer bread for dipping, so I made flatbreads to go with ... they're dressed up with some chopped rosemary, Parmesan cheese, kosher salt and black pepper. Warm from the oven with a hot bowl of soup ... you just can't go wrong! Thank you, Victoria for posting your family's recipe! I put both chick peas and rice in my version and we are just lovin' it!

crispy around the edges and chewy in the centers ... with spices and a bit of cheesiness

Armenian Meatball Soup
adapted from Victoria’s recipe on Mission: Food.com


1 c. #1 grade fine bulgur
1 c. water
1 ¼ lb. ground beef/pork mix
½ small onion, tiny dice
juice of half a lemon
1 tbsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. ground black pepper
2 tsp. sweet paprika
1 tbsp. fresh mint leaves, minced
1 tbsp. fresh parsley leaves, minced
flour for dredging
olive oil for searing


2 tbsp. butter
1 medium onion, small dice
6 c. water
2 c. strong chicken broth
1 (15-oz) can tomato sauce
2 tbsp. tomato paste
zest from ½ lemon plus 1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper
½ tsp. sweet paprika
1 (15-oz) can drained chickpeas
2 tbsp. basmati rice
1 tbsp. fresh mint leaves, minced

Making the Dish:

1. Soak the bulgur and water in a deep bowl until the water is absorbed (about 5 minutes).

2. Break up the meat and mix/smush it together with the bulgur, onions, lemon juice, and spices/herbs.

3. Roll the meat mix into meatballs (a rounded teaspoon of mixture), roll/dredge in flour and place on a large cookie sheet.

4. Set it aside for half and hour while you make the soup.

5. In a deep soup pot, sauté onions in butter until glistening over medium high heat.

6. Add the water, chicken broth, tomato sauce, salt, black pepper, paprika, mint, lemon peel and juice, and tomato paste and stir until the tomato paste has been incorporated.

7. Add the chick peas and the rice and turn heat down to simmer. Stir once in a while to be sure the rice is not sticking.

8. When the soup is made and is simmering, heat a large non-stick fry pan over medium heat.

9. Spray it with olive oil spray and fry half the meatballs, rolling them to brown them on all sides.

10. Drop them carefully into the simmering soup and brown the other half of the meatballs, spraying the pan again before placing the meatballs in the pan.

11. When all the meatballs are in the soup, cover and warm thoroughly for 30 minutes on the lowest simmer you can get.

12. Serve with more fresh mint/parsley for sprinkling and a dollop of sour cream, plus warm flatbreads for tearing and dipping in the broth.

Serves: 6

Lenten soup supper


  1. OMG!!! those flatbreads are amazing!!!... I love them!... must make them... I love your blog so much, you always have such fab food, can i come and stay with you? we could cook for the world!!!

  2. @ Dom - I would love it if you'd come visit and you can bring The Viking. Seriously, if you ever make it to New England, it would be a hoot to cook a meal together!

  3. Mmmm...that sounds so good!!

  4. Susan, thank you for sharing my delicious family recipe on your blog!! I'm glad you were able to adapt it to suit your taste. It's definitely a crowd-pleaser :)

  5. What an excellent meal Susan..those flat breads had me drooling first and then I read the ingredients list in your meatballs - bulgar, meat, mint and you had me! Now I find myself gulping very fast, very quickly ...lol..

    chow! Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  6. well we've often talked about the East Coast (even though my dad lives in California and he'd kill me if I came to the States and didn't visit him, so I am torn...) we may see you yet!

  7. Lovely dish, looking really inviting and comforting Susan!

  8. wow...looks divine...fab presentation..
    great to find your blog...lovely space with innovative recipes..
    happy to follow u..;)
    do stop by mine sometime..
    Tasty Appetite

  9. Everything about this post is great! The recipes all look amazing! Wonder if I can substitute ground chicken or turkey for the beef?

  10. @ Wilde in the Kitchen - I'll bet you can! In fact, a chicken grind that has a bit of spice would go well, as there's chicken broth in the soup broth ... I say, go for it!

  11. I want to make this soup. The addition of mint is yummy. The bread looks amazing. We always need something to dunk in our soup too,but what we dunk doesn't look as good as those flatbreads.

  12. Looks yummy. Speaking of Soup, have you stumbled upon Tami at Running With Tweezers? She publishes a soup recipe every Saturday... http://www.runningwithtweezers.com/the-saturday-soup/ Check it out.

  13. @ Kay - What a great site! I was interested in her review of the sushi place in Atlanta with the salt plank cooking right at the table ... very cool. It took me while to get to the Tabbouleh Soup - yummah!

  14. What an awesome soup! I love the accompanying flatbreads, too. I am a softie when it comes to any kind of bread.


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