Soup
Extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 large carrots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, sliced
1 bay leaf
4 fresh thyme sprigs
3 qt low-sodium chicken broth
5 parsley stems, plus 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
4 black peppercorns
Kosher salt
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for garnish

Meatballs
1 medium onion, diced
Olive oil
6 links organic chicken-apple sausage meat
1 egg
1 t fresh thyme leaves
1 handful fresh parsley leaves
1/4 c grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 lbs frozen tortellini, store bought
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Set a large stock pot over medium heat. Add olive oil, half the garlic, carrot, onion, celery, bay leaf, and thyme and gently saute until fragrant, about 5 to 7 minutes. Pour in chicken broth, add parsley stems, black peppercorns and salt, to taste. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to simmer while you work on meatballs and tortellini.

Caramelize the diced onion in a saute pan with a little olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage, egg, onion, thyme, parsley, and cheese to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until they all come together. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a skillet with a few tablespoons of olive oil until just smoking. Use a small ice cream scoop to drop meatballs onto skillet. Cook, turning, until golden brown.

Drop tortellini straight from freezer into soup. Cook until they float. Once meatballs are browned, add to pot of chicken broth. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2 or 3 minutes. Give soup a final seasoning and serve in shallow bowls with a small shower of Parmesan, olive oil, and parsley.

Source: Tyler Florence, with minor adjustments