Recipe: Matzoh Ball Soup

Today marks the beginning of Passover, or the "matzoh ball soup holiday." For eight days, Jews around the world groan about eating matzoh, and in turn attempt to hide the flavor by grinding it up and making things out of it. Although matozh ball soup isn't the most complicated thing to make, it's one of the best ways to hide that yuck matzoh flavor. Most of our friends get their fix during the year at places like Katz's, which, to our despair, adds noodles to its soup. To us, this sort of defeats the matzoh ball, which is used during Passover instead of noodles or dumplings. There is no secret to making the balls themselves -- nearly every person we have ever met uses the recipe on the back of the Manichevitz Matzo Meal carton, which is the same thing as the one on the back of Streits or any other brand you may come across.

Our recipe for matzoh ball soup, after the jump.

Matzoh Ball Soup

The balls:

  • 2 cups matzoh meal
  • 8 tablespoons veg oil
  • 8 tablespoons water or stock
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 eggs
  • The broth:

  • 1 chicken (about 3-4 pounds)
  • 1 pretty large stockpot
  • 4 or 5 cloves garlic
  • Sprig each of dill and parsley
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and quartered
  • 3 carrots, peeled and broken in half
  • 3 celery stalks washed and broken in half
  • Salt
  • 3 peppercorns (or a couple shakes of pepper)
  • In a bowl or large plastic-ware container, mix the salt, pepper, eggs and oil lightly. Add matzoh meal and mix. Add water and mix. This should be pretty soupy now, but it will thicken. Cover with plastic wrap and stick in the fridge until the soup is ready for them. Put the chicken in the pot, cover with water till it's about an inch or two above the chicken. Add the rest of the ingredients, cover, and bring to a boil. Once this boils, reduce the heat to med-low and simmer for at least an hour (I usually do about 1.5-2 hours). You will know when it's ready when you try to fish out the chicken and it falls apart. Taste for salt content, add a little water if needed. Fish out the chicken (tongs and a fry skimmer really help) and put in a Pyrex dish. Skim the half inch of fat off of the top of the soup and discard. Fish out the veggies, chop them up, and return them to the pot. Add about 4 cups of water, recover and continue to simmer.

    Give the bowl of matzoh mash a quick stir. Take a tablespoon and pull out a nice hunk of mix. Roll a two-inch-size ball lightly in your hand, and return to the pot. When all the balls are rolled, cover tightly and cook for 30-40 minutes. Remove the meat from one of the pieces of chicken, shred and return to the pot (serve the rest as stewed chicken at your Seder meal). Serve hot as first course of Passover. Yum!


  • Don't roll the matzoh balls too much in your hand - the more you handle them, the tougher they will be.
  • Moisten your hands when working with matzoh balls.
  • Tomorrow, we'll give a recipe for vegetarian matzoh ball soup.

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    Becky Means