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Yanka's Ukrainian Meatball-Spinach Soup

Yield Makes 2 1/2 quarts; 4 to 6 servings
An old family recipe, this spinach soup comes from the Ukraine, and Mann recommends that you serve it with warm, crusty French bread.


  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 pound ground lean beef or ground lean turkey (or 1/2 of each)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • About 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • About 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • About 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 quarts fat-skimmed chicken broth
  • 3 quarts spinach leaves (about 1 lb.), rinsed and drained

Nutrition Information

  • calories 594
  • caloriesfromfat 39 %
  • protein 41 g
  • fat 26 g
  • satfat 10 g
  • carbohydrate 47 g
  • fiber 7.5 g
  • sodium 583 mg
  • cholesterol 191 mg

How to Make It

  1. In a bowl, beat 1 egg to blend. Add rice, beef, onion, lemon peel, lemon juice, oregano, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; mix well.

  2. Put flour on a rimmed plate. Shape meat mixture into 1-inch balls, rolling each in flour as formed; shake off excess. Set balls slightly apart on a sheet of waxed paper.

  3. In a 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat, bring broth to a boil. Add meatballs, reduce heat, and simmer just until no longer pink in the center (cut to test), about 15 minutes.

  4. Add spinach leaves and stir gently until wilted, about 5 minutes. In a small bowl, beat with a fork remaining egg to blend. Pour into soup, stirring. Ladle soup into wide bowls. Add salt and pepper to taste.