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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Guest Jane Davis: Grandma Peggy's Chicken Soup with Matzoh Balls

Special Guest
It's a classic recipe passed down through generations which came to us from the lovely Jane Davis. They don't call it Jewish penicillin for nothing!

Ingredients for soup
1 chicken cut up into 8 pieces
Additional necks and/or backs and/or feet (if you can get them)
4 quarts of water
2 onions, cut up in chunks
2 carrots, peeled and cut up into big chunks
3 stalks of celery, cut in 3 pieces each
1 turnip, peeled and cut up
1 Tb salt
Bunch of parsley, chopped
Bunch of dill, snipped into soup

Rinse chicken in cold water. Combine all chicken, chicken parts, onions and water in a large saucepan. (Chicken feet can be found in Chinese markets and add additional body to the soup.) Bring to a boil then cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 1 1/2 hours. Add the rest of the ingredients. Cover and cook over low heat for about an hour. Have three bowls ready.
With tongs, remove all of the chicken into one bowl then remove all of the other ingredients into the other bowl. Then pick out the carrots and place in a small bowl. Reserve them for the soup. Discard the other veggies by pouring through any kind of strainer putting the pot or a big bowl underneath. Once the chicken is cooled, remove and discard the skin. Begin removing the chicken meat and shredding it into the bowl. Use shredded chicken and carrots in the soup. Soup can be frozen.

Matzo Balls are traditional Jewish dumplings made out of matzoh meal (crushed up matzoh) and served in chicken soup.

Ingredients for matzoh balls
3 eggs
2 T oil
1/2 C seltzer
1 C matzoh meal
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 T finely chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix eggs, oil and seltzer together. A whisk or fork will do. Add the matzoh meal, baking powder, salt, pepper and parsley together and mix well. With clean hands, dig in and mix! Make sure you take any rings off so they don’t get hidden in the balls.
Allow the mixture to stand for 10 minutes. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (or you can use the chicken soup). Wet your hands and form small balls of the matzoh meal and drop into the water or soup. Reduce heat to simmering and cover the pot. Cook, gently, for about 30 minutes. Thank you Jane!