Yesterday I was at the grocery store, feeling rather uninspired and thought to just pick up some stuff for a stew with hamburger, peas and pasta. Simple, gut-sticking, warming (which we need right now!). After the store I talked to my mom and told her what I was planning for dinner and she said sometimes she makes meatballs for her stew. Okay, THERE goes the lightbulb! So I turned my thrown toegther stew into something more special. And it was easy and fast! To my friend Amy, I am sorry, but this recipe does not have much "recipe-ness" to it, either. lol.
Meatball Orzo Stew
*1.5 lbs hamburger
*A few crackers or some old bread turned into breadcrumbs by a few pulses in the food processor
*1.5 to 2 eggs (2 eggs for the 2 lbs hamburger I made but did not use all of)
*2 cartons organic broth--I used one veggie and one beef. As a side note, regular broth is full of MSG and bad salt, as well as being made with questionable meats. Organic really is better here. Of course, homemade stock is best, but just having moved I did not have any.
*15 oz can of stewed tomatoes (I ground mine into sauce because no one but me likes stewed tomatoes)
*1 lb of orzo pasta (or any other shape you desire)
*dried oregano to taste
Make the meatballs by combining all but the broth, pasta and oregano. Mash it all up together and start making small balls. IN a pot or skillet with melted butter or olive oil, etc. fry up the meatballs. They do not have to get done, only browned. they will get done in the stew. When you've fried up all your meatballs, pour in the broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil (you can add the oregano here). Once at a boil, add orzo. Reduce heat and cook until pasta is done. Turn off heat and add peas (if frozen). Stir and let sit for a few minutes to allow peas to thaw. Enjoy!