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Chickarina Soup

I don’t remember cans of Chickarina soup in my house as a child, but they were certainly a big hit during my college years.  When we went the route of a splurge, my best friend and I would throw a few cans of Chickarina into the cart for random lunches and dinners.  But because we went through them so quickly and couldn’t afford to get them all the time, Chickarina became a bit of a delicacy.  With my proclivity for making soups and stocks even back then, I’m surprised I didn’t attempt a homemade version back then.  No matter – I came around to it eventually :)

chickarina

Upon researching this recipe, I tried to find out more of the history of Chickarina.  Like some deep, dark government secret, there is no true history available online.  What the hell?  There were a few mentions of a “chickarina” jingle from way back in the day, including this one from a site dating it back to the 60s.  And a whole lot of people labeling it as Italian Wedding Soup, which it’s not.  Though both dishes have mini meatballs and acini di pepe (mini pasta pearls – the name means “peppercorns” in Italian), the spinach or escarole is replaced with carrots and celery for a chicken soup + meatball experience.  It’s excellent through and through, and a lovely riff on home cooked goodness. Continue reading Chickarina Soup