• 2 tablespoons butter or margarine

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2 cups chopped onion

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 cup chopped celery

  • 1 cup chopped carrots

  • 6 cups beef stock (homemade or canned)

  • 1 cup tomato purée

  • 2 large red potatoes, peeled and diced

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


Heat the butter and oil together in a large, heavy pot.


Stir in the onion, garlic and celery and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes.


Stir in the carrots and stir for 2 to 3 minutes longer.


Add the stock, tomato purée and potatoes.
 

Bring to boil and simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes.


Make Basil Meatballs according to following recipe; add to soup and cook 20 minutes longer.


Season to taste and serve piping hot.


Serves 8 to 10.

Basil Meatballs:

  • 1 pound very lean ground beef

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt ( or to taste)

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil (1 teaspoon dried)

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

  • 1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs

  • 1 egg, slightly beaten

Lightly toss together all ingredients.


Form into tiny meatballs and add them to the soup.