Meat-Rice "Barrel" Soup

Yuvarelakia Soupa Avgolemono

Yield: 6 servings

1 lb Ground beef, veal or lamb
1    Onion; grated
2    Garlic cloves; crushed (opt)
6 tb Raw long-grain white rice
     Chopped fresh parsley
2 tb Chopped dill, mint or basil
1 ts Dried oregano or thyme
     Salt & freshly ground pepper
3    Eggs
5 c  Water or stock
1    Onion (optional); chopped
1    Celery stalk (opt.); chopped
½    Carrot (optional); chopped
1    Lemon (or more), juice only

In a large bowl, combine the meat, grated onion, garlic, rice, 3
tablespoons chopped parsley, the mint, oregano, salt and pepper, and
1 egg, slightly beaten. Knead for a few minutes, then shape into
walnut-sized barrels and set aside.

In a soup pot, bring the water or stock to boil with the chopped
onion, celery and carrot, and salt and pepper to taste. Lower the
heat and add the meat-rice barrels. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes,
then remove from the heat.

To prepare avgolemono, beat the two remaining eggs for 2 minutes.
Continuing to beat, gradually add the lemon juice. Then add 1 cup of
the hot broth by droplets, beating steadily, until all has been
added. Add to the soup and heat, being careful not to let it boil.
Serve hot, garnished with parsley.

Note: This soup is frequently made without the additional vegetables
added to the liquid.  Also, you may enjoy this soup without
avgolemono, in which case add ½ cup canned tomato sauce to the
liquid and reduce the water to 4½ cups.

From: "The Food of Greece" by Vilma Liacouras Chantiles.  Avenel
Books, New York.