Some call it Jewish penicillin, I just call it good. Yes ladies and gentlemen I’m talking about Matzo Ball Soup. Whether you’re Jewish or not this is a classic comfort dish and little did I know that it doesn’t take long to create it in your own home.
Since I was a little kid every time I would get sick, whether it was a cold, the flu, or I just playing hooky, I would ask my Mom to pick me up matzo ball soup from the local deli. They have the best matzo balls there (although it’s 2nd to my Mom’s). They’re big, soft, and fluffy with just enough resistance on the spoon when you in dive into one. These matzo balls can make any day better and I truly believe can cure the common cold.
The problem was when I moved away from home, in my new city of Poughkeepsie, I could not find any deli that served anything that resembled a matzo ball. The only solution was to attempt to make them myself. And I found out…it’s not hard at all.
Being the purist I am, I decided to start with matzo meal. Only problem is…I could not find any in this god forsaken town if my life depended on it. What I decided to do…which I would never want to admit is…I bought Matzo Ball Mix. I am not a proponent of using prepared mixes when cooking. I actually never use them and when I say never, I mean NEVER. But when I checked the label for ingredients it simply listed matzo meal and some other spices. So essentially in my mind, at least to rationalize the purchase, it was like buying plain matzo meal.
I followed the recipe on the back of the box that included 5 ounces of matzo meal, 4 eggs, and 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil. This will yield about 18 small matzo balls. But here’s the secret to make fluffy matzo balls (every Jewish wife knows trick) seltzer. Add an additional 4 tablespoons of seltzer to the dough and this will turn your heavy, dense balls into beautiful, light, and airy spheres of delight!
I also added about one tablespoon of fresh dill and one tablespoon of fresh parsley, just to brighten it up a little bit.
So mix together your matzo meal, eggs, vegetable oil, seltzer, and fresh herbs in a bowl. Let the dough rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes. Then using your hands make 18-20 small balls or 13-15 large balls. Re-wet your hands in between each ball, which will make it easier to shape the wet dough. Poach them in a flavorful liquid (chicken broth, court bouillon, salted water) for about 45 minutes And that’s it. Penicillin in a bowl.