This Greek Meatball Avgolemono soup recipe is one of the most favourite greek soups for winter alongside Greek Chicken soup. In our home, Youvarlakia is always served when a family member is feeling unwell during winter upon request by the ill-stricken individual. It can be served as a full flavoured hearty dish as seen above, or with less rice and more avgolemono.
Youvarlakia made by all greek grandmothers is a hearty and delicious greek meatball soup recipe perfect for a cold winters day and a classic favourite amongst all greek homes. Although it is a greek favourite it is always well received when non-Greek family friends are visiting.
The egg lemon sauce ( avgolemono ) is made right at the end, and gives the soup a thick creamy texture. Finally, here is the recipe if you would like to try it out for yourself.
This recipe has been updated to include a weight measurement for the lemon juice. The quantity of juice in lemons vary a great deal. Perhaps reserve some lemon before doing it all into the soup. This way you can include as much lemon to suit your palette.
Serves 4 – 5
1 medium onion chopped finely
1 clove garlic
1 medium carrot chopped finely
1 small celery stalk chopped finely
1/4 cup parsley chopped
5 tablespoons olive oil
500g premium lean lamb mince
1/2 onion grated
1/4 cup mint and parsley mix chopped finely
20g Arborio rice
3/4 cup or 40g Arborio rice per individual
3 cups hot water
2 eggs separated
2 juicy lemons ( apx 50g )
salt, pepper to taste
flour for dusting the meatballs
We need to start with making the soup base.
Place olive oil, onion, garlic and carrot in a medium sized saucepan. Stir, until the onion becomes transparent.
Pour hot water, a small piece of the lemon and half of the herbs.
Allow to boil for 20-30 minutes on high. Blend with a hand beater for 1 minute. The vegetables, will resemble a broth. Blending the vegetables helps with the flavour of the soup.
Blend the vegetable broth
Make the meatballs
Mix the mince, the half onion, salt, pepper , remaining herbs and 20g of the Arborio rice. Form small rounds slightly smaller than a golf ball.
Prepared meatballs, ready to dust with flour
Lightly flour the meatballs.
Turn the broth heat on low and gently place the meatballs into the broth.
Allow to simmer until the meatballs start to float.
Pour the rice into the meatball broth. Allow to cook gently for approximately 20 minutes. Intermittently with a teaspoon try the rice. Half way through, you will need to add an extra cup of hot water as the rice absorbs the liquids. At this point, you will determine if you would like a little extra liquid in the broth. Turn off the heat when your ready.
Making the Avgolemono
While the rice is cooking, separate your eggs. Beat the egg whites until thick and fluffy. Stir through the egg yolk.
Beat egg white then add yolk back in
Squeeze lemon juice from the two lemons and pour lemon juice as your stirring into beaten egg whites.
Put it all together
Remove one cup of the broth into a measuring cup. Add 1/4 cup cold water. Adding the cold water, helps to guarantee your eggs won’t curdle in case the broth was too hot.
Slowly, add a little of the broth into the beaten egg, stir, pause and resume pouring in small quantities in this fashion until all broth has been poured into the egg mixture. You now have avgolemono.
Your soup should have cooled slightly as you were preparing the avgolemono.
Stir in a little at a time the avgolemono – gently so that the meatballs do not collapse.
Serve. Add extra lemon and herbs according to taste.