Youvarlakia is a traditional Greek meatball soup with rice, egg, and lemon. A very comforting and nourishing family meal made on a budget. It's pretty similar to the classic Avgolemono Chicken Soup and the Stuffed Cabbage Rolls With Avgolemono. And if you didn't get it by now, Avgolemono stands for Egg & Lemon. Where Avgo= Egg, and Lemono=well, lemon for obvious reasons 😛
It's one of our favorite ways to thicken a soup in Greece (the other one will be the use of olive oil when cooking soups with legumes).
It makes a dish feel so comforting, sooo yummy, and yet so light, all at the same time.
Dinner On A Budget
This Easy Meatball Soup is a dinner on a budget! It requires only a handful of ingredients which are basic and really cheap, like rice and eggs. The most expensive ingredient is ground beef. That's used in a low quantity of 700 grams, which cooked in this soup is enough to feed a family of 4.
How To Make The Avgolemono
To thicken the soup with Avgolemono (egg-lemon) all you basically do is whisk the eggs in a bowl and then very slowly pour (first in small drops and then threadlike) the hot soup into the eggs while whisking constantly. If you pour the hot soup into the eggs too quickly, then it will burn and curdle the egg. That's why you add it very slowly in order to temper the egg without making it curdle. Then you pour the egg mixture back into the pot, add the freshly squeezed lemon and stir.
Many people like to add the lemon straight into the eggs and whisk them together. I find this way trickier to make Avgolemono since the lemon thickens the egg right away making it easier to curdle when pouring the hot soup into it.
I always prefer to let the hot soup sit for 10 minutes to drop to a 'safer' not-so-hot temperature. And also add a little bit of water to the eggs to make them less thick and easier to incorporate into the soup. If you want to know more on how to make perfect, no-fail avgolemono check out this recipe for more tips & tricks.
Easy To Make Meatball Soup Ready In One Hour
It's so easy to make this soup, that all you have to do is boil the water, dip the meatballs in slowly with a spoon, cook them for 30-40 minutes, and then add the rice along with chopped parsley. Once the rice is cooked, prepare the avgolemono and incorporate it with the soup. All ready in just one hour.
Easy Meatball Soup With Rice (Youvarlakia Avgolemono)
For The Meatballs:
- 700 grams ground beef
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons short grain rice
- 1 small onion minced
- 1 egg
- a bit of fresh parsley chopped
- a bit of fresh dill chopped
For The Soup:
- 100 ml olive oil
- 150 grams short grain rice
- 1 small stick of celery finely chopped
- 2 eggs
- 1 lemon juiced
- salt and pepper
For The Meatballs:
- Add all of the ingredients for the meatballs in a mixing bowl and mix well.
- Shape them into round meatballs (about 60-65 grams each). Set aside.
For The Soup:
- In a medium-sized cooking pot, add 3 liters of water, along with the 100 ml of olive oil and bring to a boil.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Once the water is boiling, start adding the meatballs one by one. Use a spoon to carefully dip each one.
- NOTE: If the temperature of the water drops while you add the meatballs, put the pot's lid back on, and wait for a minute or two until water starts to boil again. This way when you drop the meatball into the boiling water, the meatball gets firm right away and won't break and crumble.
- Once you have added all the meatballs and the water is boiling, reduce heat to medium and with the lid back on, simmer for about 30-40 minutes.
- Add the rice and celery, and simmer for another 20 minutes or until rice is cooked.
- Remove from heat and set aside for 10 minutes for the temperature to drop slightly.
- In a small mixing bowl whisk the eggs along with 2 tablespoons of water.
- Using a ladle, take a spoonful of the soup and start pouring it into the eggs (tiny drops at a time) while stirring vigorously and constantly. Continue until you add at least half of the soup into the eggs, and then transfer back to the pot.
- Stir in the fresh lemon juice and serve!
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