In Mexico, this soup is known as Albondigas sopa. Albondigas are meatballs. And it’s very, very good! If you like it a little bit hotter, use a hotter salsa, or add a finely chopped jalapeno or serrano chili when sauteeing the onions. Make some guacamole and salsa to serve with corn chips and there you go!
Makes 6 – 8 Main Course Servings
For the Soup:
2 Tbsp. EVOO
2 ¾ cups chopped onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 small bay leaves
7 ¼ oz. beef stock (see below) or low/no salt beef broth (5 – 14 ½ oz. tins)
1 – 28 oz. tin Italian plum tomatoes, diced, juice reserved
½ cup chunky, medium-hot, tomato salsa
½ cup chopped cilantro (1/4 cup for meatballs)
For The Meatballs:
1 lb. lean ground beef
¼ lb. bulk pork sausage meat or pork sausages with skins removed
6 Tbsp. yellow cornmeal
¼ cup homogenized milk (whole milk)
1 large egg
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp. ground cumin
½ cup long-grain white rice
Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add 1 ¾ cups onions, 2 garlic cloves the bay leaves and sauté 5 minutes without browning the onions. Turn heat down to medium if it is too hot. Add broth, tomatoes with their juices, salsa and ¼ cup cilantro; bring to a boil. Cover, simmer 15 minutes. Meanwhile, combine ground beef, pork sausage, cornmeal, milk, egg, salt, pepper, cumin, remaining 1 cup of onions, 2 garlic cloves and ¼ cup cilantro in a medium bowl; mix well to combine. Shape the mixture in 1” or 1 ¼” meatballs.
Add the rice and meatballs to the soup, bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat; cover and simmer until rice and meatballs are tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes; season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls, serve immediately.
Helpful link to Making Stock.