Matzo Ball Soup

Matzo Ball Soup
The most classic, and perhaps most beloved, of all Passover dishes, matzo ball soup is usually served at the beginning of the seder meal. While the texture of the matzo balls can vary from firm and chewy to light and airy, the chicken soup they're cooked in is always simple: a pure, comforting broth with only a few carrots or a sprinkling of herbs added to it. See this Recipe
André Baranowski

This classic Passover recipe is served as the first course of the seder meal in Jewish homes all around the world. This version comes from Renee Renner, a home cook in the Bronx, New York, who adds seltzer to the matzo balls to ensure that they turn out light and airy.

Matzo Ball Soup
This classic Passover recipe is served as the first course of the seder meal in Jewish homes all around the world.
Yield: serves 8-10

Ingredients

  • 12 sprigs fresh dill
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 3 sprigs fresh cilantro
  • 2 small yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch celery, cut into 1/2" pieces
  • Sprigs from 1⁄2 bunch flat-leaf parsley plus 1 tbsp. chopped
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 turnip, peeled and cut into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 parsley root, cut into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 (3 1⁄2-lb.) chicken
  • 1 lb. chicken feet
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tbsp. seltzer water
  • 18 tsp. dried dill
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 12 cup plus 1 tbsp. matzo meal

Instructions

  1. Gather up dill, garlic, cilantro, onions, celery, and parsley sprigs in a piece of cheesecloth to form a purse; secure with twine. Make a second purse with the carrots, turnips, and parsley root.
  2. Put dill purse, chicken, chicken feet, salt, and 1 12 gallons water into a large pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, covered, for 1 12 hours. Add carrot purse and simmer, covered, until carrots are tender, about 30 minutes.
  3. Remove and discard dill purse and feet. Remove chicken and carrot purse; let cool. Pull enough breast meat into fine shreds to make 3⁄4 cup. Reserve 1 cup vegetables from the carrot purse. Cover and chill shredded chicken and vegetables. (Reserve remaining chicken and vegetables for another use.) Strain broth through a fine sieve; chill overnight. Skim off and discard all but 2 tbsp. chicken fat from broth; set fat aside.
  4. Whisk together reserved chicken fat, seltzer, dried dill, and eggs in a bowl. Pour in matzo meal while whisking. Cover and chill the matzo mixture for 15 minutes. Bring 2 1⁄2 quarts salted water to a boil. With wet hands, form matzo mixture into 1" balls. Reduce heat to medium; drop in balls. Cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Stir balls gently and simmer, covered, until fluffy, 10–12 minutes more. Meanwhile, transfer reserved shredded chicken, mixed vegetables, and broth to a large pot; heat over medium heat. Transfer balls to the broth. Serve soup garnished with remaining parsley.