05 October 2008

jewish comfort food

my ultimate comfort food is chicken and matzo ball soup, even though I never had this as a kid, it is very comforting to me. this is what I always cook for anyone in my family whenever they are sick and it is what I always crave when I am sick. the problem is that my recipe is an evolution from the neiman marcus chicken stock and I had not bothered to write it down until recently. I took the time to write it down a few months ago, so my hubby would not have an excuse not to make it for me when I am sick. well, my allergies are really bothering me and my sweet hubby made this for me today, so I will share the recipe with you.

Homemade Chicken Soup

usually when I take the time to put down a recipe, it is for someone else’s benefit, but this one is for mine. my chicken and matzo ball soup is the best thing to cure you no matter what ailes you. the only problem is that I am the only one that can make it. so, now that I have the receipe down mike has no excuse not to make it for me the next time that I am sick.

2 to 3 pounds cut up chicken
1 cup coarsely chopped celery
½ cup peeled and chopped carrots
1 cup onion wedges
4 garlic cloves, mashed
5 black peppercorns
1 dried bay leaf
3 fresh thyme sprigs
3 fresh sage leaves
1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
3 chicken bouillon cubes, crushed
1 tablespoon kosher salt

1. rinse chicken pieces under cold running water and place in a heavy-bottomed stockpot. add the remaining ingredients and add about 1 gallon cold water or enough to cover the ingredients by about 2 inches.
2. bring to a boil over medium-high heat. turn down heat to medium-low and let simmer for 3 to 4 hours, skimming the surface occasionally to remove fat. partially cover the pot with a lid, but do not let cook above a slow simmer; this ensures a clean soup.
3. pass the stock through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean saucepan and skim again. ladle the warm broth into soup bowls.

timeline for caryn’s chicken and matzo ball soup

(this takes about 4 hours from start to finish)
1. start chicken soup
2. wait one hour
3. mix together matzo balls and place in fridge to chill
4. wait one hour
5. remove chicken from soup and set aside to keep warm
6. put chicken bones back in soup
7. wait one hour
8. strain soup
9. make matzo balls and place into soup

Matzo Balls

These in my chicken soup is the ultimate comfort food. these matzo balls are what are called “floaters” they will float to the top of the soup when they are done.

1 egg
2 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
3 tablespoons water or soup stock
½ cup matzo meal
pinch of salt
grind of pepper (white pepper if you have it, if not, black pepper will work just fine)

1. whisk the eggs in a bowl and then whisk in the melted butter or margarine. continue to whisk as you add in the water or soup stock.
2. stir in the matzo meal, salt, and pepper. stir until you have a thick paste (adding more water or matzo meal if needed).
3. cover and put in the refrigerator to chill for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
4. remove from the refrigerator and shape into about 20 walnut-sized balls (or smaller if you want to, they will almost double in size as they cook).
5. drop the balls into boiling salted water or directly into the soup stock. let the balls cook for about 20 minutes or until they rise to the surface.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the recipe! I'm getting the ingredients on the next shopping trip.