This week is Passover. A holiday commemorating the freeing of the Hebrew slaves in ancient Egypt. Those that observe will not eat anything with any type of grain or any sort of leavening agent in it. The most common food that is eaten is matzo which is made from just flour and water. For a full detailed explanation of Passover you can read it here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passover Matzo ball soup is a traditional Passover food. It is basically chicken soup with matzo balls in it and it’s sooooo good.
Matzo Ball Soup
For the soup
1 large chicken, cut up, cleaned and excess fat and some skin removed
1 leek, cleaned and cut in half
1 large turnip, peeled and cut in chunks
3 carrots, peeled in cut into large pieces
2 stalks of celery cut into large pieces
2 parsnips, peeled and cut into large pieces
fresh parsley and fresh dill
Enough water to cover the chicken and the vegetables
salt and pepper
Directions for the soup
Place the chicken and all the vegetables in a large pot. Add water to cover the chicken and vegetables. Add salt and pepper. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for an hour. In the middle of cooking take the cover partially off. Let the liquid cook down a bit…..taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if needed. During the last 15 minutes of cooking add a handful of dill and parsley. Remove as much of it when the soup is done.
When the soup is done pour into a large container and let cool in the refrigerator over night until the fat comes to the top and hardens. Skim the fat off and reheat. I like to eat my soup with some of the vegetables in it so that is up to you if you want to leave them in.
Ingredients for the Matzo Balls
1 cup matzo meal
4 large eggs
1/4 cup oil or melted margarine
1/4 cup water or seltzer
1 tsp. of salt or to taste
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
This is what the box of matzo meal looks like…for those in Europe it will be a different brand but you get the idea
Beat eggs. Add water, oil, salt and pepper. Mix well. Add matzo meal and stir throughly. Refrigerator for 1/2 to 1 hour. Partially fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add salt to the water. Moisten palms with cold water and form mixture into balls about 1″ diameter. Drop matzo balls into boiling water. When all the matzo balls are in the pot, reduce heat to low. Simmer covered for about 30 minutes or until done. Remove with slotted spoon to a large bowl. Place in a bowl with the chicken soup and Enjoy! Makes 10 1 1/2″ matzo balls