The Happy Home Cook: Misua Soup with Vegetables and Meatballs

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First published in https://www.asianinamericamag.com/2014/03/sabaw-ng-miswa-misua-soup-with-meatballs/

 Misua Soup (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

Misua Soup (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

Misua Soup with Vegetables and Meatballs is made with wheat noodles or ‘Chinese vermicelli noodles’. This is a classic Filipino soup and easy to make any day. My mother cooked this often when we were children especially because my younger sister was a picky eater. Misua soup was the only thing my little sister ate then. Start with a good soup stock and mix in the meatballs, noodles, vegetables and beaten egg. Traditionally, Filipinos add patola (sponge gourd or Asian okra) but if not available, substitute with zucchini slices like I did for this recipe. Other vegetable substitutes I have used were upo (bottle gourd) or sayote (chayote). You’ll have a fine and healthy meal in a soup that children (and parents, too) will love. This is an Asian In America recipe and serves 2 to 4.

Ingredients

  • ground pork butt (or use ground beef) - 1 pound

  • onion - 1 large, chopped, divided, half for meatballs, rest for broth

  • eggs - 4 large, divided, use 2 for meatballs, rest for broth

  • bread crumbs - 1/4 cup

  • soy sauce - 2 Tablespoons

  • all-purpose flour – 2 Tablespoons

  • sea salt - 1 teaspoon, for meatballs

  • freshly ground black pepper - 1 teaspoon, for meatballs

  • vegetable or corn oil - 2 Tablespoons

  • fresh garlic - 2 cloves, peeled, minced

  • patis (Filipino fish sauce) - 2 Tablespoons

  • Organic soup broth or rice wash - 8 to 10 cups (obtain rice wash from water after washing rice)

  • Misua or Chinese Vermicelli noodles - 4 ounces, about 2 cups when cooked (from Asian markets)

  • zucchini - 1 whole, peeled, sliced, (optional in place of patola, a Filipino gourd), about 1 ½ cups sliced

  • sea salt - 1 teaspoon, for soup

  • freshly ground black pepper - 1 teaspoon, for soup

 Misua Soup with patola and meatballs (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

Misua Soup with patola and meatballs (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

Procedure

  • Prepare the meatballs: combine in a medium bowl the ground pork, chopped onion, soy sauce, 2 eggs, bread crumbs, flour, salt and black pepper. Mix and shape into 1-inch sized meatballs. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to firm up till ready to add to broth.

  • In a large heavy stock pot, over medium heat, add the cooking oil. When hot enough in about 2 to 3 minutes, sauté the garlic and rest of the onion. Cook for 2 minutes or till onions are transparent. Add the patis (fish sauce) and soup broth or rice wash. Allow the broth to come to a boil then lower heat for a slow simmer.

  • As the broth is simmering, drop the pork meatballs into the stock pot. Cook the meatballs for about 25 minutes or till thoroughly cooked (there should be no more pink parts in the meat).

  • Add two beaten eggs to the soup broth while stirring the liquid. Blend the eggs completely into the broth which will become a light yellow opaque liquid.

  • Add the zucchini slices and the misua noodles to the broth with the meatballs. Mix it around. Let the zucchini cook and noodles soften for about 5 to 6 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper powder. Serve piping hot.

Cook's comments: use ground beef instead of pork for meatballs if preferred. The noodles will expand and thicken when cooked. If reheating the soup, add more stock if the noodles absorb all the liquid.


 Elizabeth Ann Quirino

Elizabeth Ann Quirino

Elizabeth Ann Quirino, based in New Jersey is a journalist and author of the “How to Cook Philippine Desserts: Cakes and Snacks” Cookbook. She is a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals and blogs about Filipino home cooking on her site AsianInAmericaMag.com.


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