A matzoh ball is basically a dumpling made of crushed matzoh (matzoh meal). They can be made firm and heavy, with a slightly chewy texture, or very soft, with a melt-in-your-mouth lightness. My matzoh balls are fairly traditional, combining matzoh meal with some type of fat (preferably chicken fat) for richness and flavor, seltzer, and eggs to bind all the ingredients into a loose batter that thickens when chilled and produces light, fluffy balls that retain their shape when boiled. The onion and parsley in mine are not traditional, but I like mine that way. I prefer my soup very simple--just wonderfully rich homemade stock along with perfectly cooked soft matzoh balls that dissolve in your mouth. Truely...a soup for the soul...
In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Stir in the carbonated water, onion,salt pepper, parsley and melted chicken fat. While stirring, add the matzoh meal a small amount at a time (if you prefer a heavier matzoh ball, add up to 1/4 cup additional matzoh meal, to taste). The finished product should be a loose batter, similar in consistency to pancake batter. Cover and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Oil or wet your hands and form small, loose balls of about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the batter. (Do not to press too hard, the matzo balls should be light but should also retain their shape.) Gently drop matzoh balls into boiling water, reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer until balls are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes, depending on size. (They are done when they float and look bloated.) Remove matzoh balls with a slotted spoon, and reserve. (The recipe can be made ahead to this point; let stand at room temperature for up to 2 hours or cover and chill up to 1 day.)
Bring broth and a pinch of crushed saffron to a gentel simmer in a deep pot. Add matzo balls, simmer until warmed through, about 10 minutes. Ladle stock, plus 2 to 3 matzoh balls into individual bowls and serve
Makes about 14 to 16 matzoh balls.
* Note: If you don't have your own, schmaltz (chicken fat) can be found at butcher shops or in the meat markets of some large supermarkets.
You can also add some of your favorite herbs or spices. Common additions are cayenne pepper, parsley, chopped chives, grated onion, grated garlic, and ground ginger. These will all add a delicious flavor to your matzoh balls.
It's not terribly hard to make good matzoh ball soup; it just requires adherence to four key rules: (1) use chicken fat (not oil); (2) chill the batter well; (3) use well oiled or wet hands to form the balls (this usually ensures a matzoh ball with a definite shape, that doesn't fall apart); (4) don't press too hard when forming the matzoh balls.
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|Serving Size: 1 Matzoh Ball (175g)|
|Recipe Makes: 16|
|Calories from Fat: 67 (38%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 7.5g||10 %|
|Saturated Fat 2.3g||11 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 2.9g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 1.1g|
|Cholesterol 267.1mg||82 %|
|Sodium 218.2mg||8 %|
|Potassium 197.8mg||5 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 15.6g||5 %|
|Dietary Fiber 0.5g||2 %|
|Sugars, other 15.1g|
|Protein 11.6g||17 %|
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Calories per serving: 178
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