Matzo Ball Soup for the Soul

BY KIM MATURO

Matzo ball soup
Photo Credit: Katherine Macnaughton

Every year, my extended family gets together for a traditional Passover Seder. On the two first nights, we get together at a family member’s house and go through the traditional readings of the story of Passover followed by copious amounts of food. This year, the second night was hosted by my parents and the meal began with the most comforting classic matzo ball soup.

The secret to making a good soup is the broth. Some people like a chunky, vegetable filled, chicken or beef broth. Personally, I like a clear and flavourful broth like the one my mom makes.

Now for the matzo balls, they come in a kosher, prepackaged mix and they are extremely simple to make. Most grocery stores with a kosher section will carry the mix all year round. However, if you want to make sure to get your hands on a box, now’s the time to stock up as the holiday has just ended. The instructions are on the box and the ingredients are usually handy (eggs, oil). Forming your balls is also an important step. Make sure not to make them too big as they will double in size while cooking. Happy holidays!

Matzo ball soup
Photo Credit: Katherine Macnaughton

Matzo Balls
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup Manischewitz® Matzo Meal

Method

  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Cover and chill mixture in refrigerator for about 20 minutes.
  3. Remove chilled matzo ball mixture from refrigerator. Moisten hands and form batter into matzo balls, approximately 1 inch in diameter.

Chicken Broth
2 carrots
1 onion
3 hearts of celery (the part that has the most leaves)
2 parsnips
1 large potato
Handful of parsley
1 kosher chicken (I like to use a kosher chicken because they leave the fat or schmaltz as it’s necessary for the flavour. Kosher butchers sell the schmaltz separately as well. I take the breasts off the bone and keep them for another dinner.)
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Brown the chicken in your largest pot at medium heat. No need to put oil in the pan.
  2. Take the chicken out when browned and add cut up veggies (not the parsley). Stir in fat for about 5 min.
  3. Put the chicken back into the pot with the veggies.
  4. Add the parsley and salt and pepper.
  5. Cover with enough water to one inch above the chicken in the pot. Cover pot.
  6. Put heat to high and allow to boil. When boiling, reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 2 – 3 hours. You will know when it is done when the stock looks clear and you see a pool of fat at the top.
  7. Strain chicken and veggies, but keep the meat from the chicken to put in soup.
  8. Drop matzo balls into pot of boiling broth, reduce heat and simmer until thoroughly cooked (about 5 minutes).
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