73. Monegasque (no, really!) Spinach & Orzo Soup

Monegasque: (mô-n-gsk)

n.

A native or inhabitant of Monaco; a Monacan.

adj.

Native to or originating in Monaco.

I'm not sure what, technically, makes this soup (from Lydie Marshall's excellent-so-far Soup of the Day) count as Monegasque. (Honestly, I wasn't actually aware until flipping through this book that there was such a thing as Monegasque cuisine. A little heavy on the Formula One, I would assume. And probably best eaten whilst wearing a tiara.)

But it looked like a perfect Monday night recipe: not overly heavy or stodgy, demanding of very little technical skill, simultaneously brothy and filling. So I gave it a try, and I'm ever so glad I did. Also: ever so glad Jim went out and bought real true Gruyere to put in it (and that's not just because I got to eat the rest of the Gruyere).

Simple and delicious. Pick up some Gruyere (make sure you get enough for snackies later) and give it a try.

Monegasque Spinach & Orzo Soup
Serves four to six

Lots and lots of spinach (seriously–probably about 1-1/2 of those 10 oz bags of baby spinach), roughly chopped–you'll want 8 to 10 cups of spinach
5 eggs
1-1/2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese
Nutmeg, preferably freshly grated
Salt and pepper
6 cups good, strong chicken broth (I suppose you could use vegetable broth as well, but make sure it's good–the flavor of the broth is really critical here)
1-1/2 cups orzo pasta

In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Fold in the spinach and the cheese; mix well. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper.

In a soup pot, bring the chicken broth to a boil; stir in the orzo; cover, reduce heat and simmer 3 to 5 minutes, or until orzo is barely tender on the outside but not cooked through.

Stir in spinach-egg-cheese mixture. Return to a simmer; cook, covered, until orzo is cooked al dente. Taste and correct seasoning, adding more nutmeg if needed, and serve piping hot.

You'll probably want some good bread for soaking up every drop of the flavorful broth.

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About Molly Newman

Writer, cook and trivia/spelling bee hostess, living it up in North Portland.
This entry was posted in Food and Drink, Recipes, Soup 365, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Option and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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