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This is a variation on a recipe for Albondigas soup that I learned from my Mother-in-Law:

Ingredients:
• 3 lbs hamburger, rolled into small balls
• 5 lbs potatoes chopped into chunks
• 2 cans stewed tomatoes
• A bunch of scallions, or more if you like them
• 2 cans whole olives
• 1 whole garlic, thinly sliced, or garlic salt if you don’t have the whole
• 2-3 cubes of bullion
• 2-3 yellow mild chilis to taste

Cooking:
• Fill a large pot half full of water, set to boil; add ingredients, and bring to boil, skimming off froth. After the soup comes to a boil, turn down heat to simmer 1-2 hours. Serve with warm tortillas, or saltine crackers.

* Spanish rice may be served either as a side, or in the soup bowls. Add salt at table to accommodate those on a salt restricted diet.

* Directions on making Spanish rice:

• Rule of thumb: 2 cups of water to 1 cup of rice.

• If you are familiar with cooking Rice-o-Roni, you are already half-way to mastering the art of cooking perfect Spanish rice.

• My variation on my Mother-in-Law’s Spanish rice is that I draw the water to boil separately (set flame on high) with a small can of tomato sauce with 2 cubes of beef bullion.

• For every cup of rice, use one large and generous tablespoon of cooking oil. I myself use canola oil.

Pre-Cooking the Rice:
• Just as with Rice-o-Roni, add the oil to a large skillet, and then add the rice. Stir continuously until the rice begins to turn a light golden brown.

• After pre-cooking the rice, your water and ingredients should be at or near a boil. Add the water to the rice in the skillet. Be careful of the hot steam. Bring the rice to low flame and cover and simmer the rice for about 15 minutes. Resist the urge to peek, or you will ruin the rice.

• After 15 minutes remove the lid. The rice should be done, but if the rice has not absorbed all the moister, leave the lid off and cook until the water evaporates.

• Serve soup and rice at once.

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