As a child who was raised in a Jewish household, albeit in a pretty much non-religious one, I was still exposed to several different foods that appear as part of the traditional Jewish menu. I’ve posted a couple of different brisket recipes on the site, and another one of my favorites growing up was matzo ball soup. My mom’s was, and is, the absolute best, and part of the reason for that is her use of schmaltz, or chicken fat, to make the rich broth…rich, and not exactly healthy for you. Still, all things in moderation, as I often say.
As an adult, finding an easy matzo ball soup recipe was a must, even when I didn’t have the time to actually make it from scratch. I found the boxed version of Manischewitz Reduced Sodium Matzo Ball Soup mix, which features a powdered soup base, and one for the matzo balls as well, to which vegetable oil and two eggs are added. Then the mixture is blended and put in the fridge to chill. What I like to do once the water is added to the soup mix is add about half a box of pasta, and two or three cans of chicken breast meat. Then, when the mixture has chilled and you take it out of the fridge to form it into balls, the pasta can cook at the same time the balls can, once the fire under the soup is turned down to a simmer.
After twenty minutes, when you turn the fire off, the soup is ready, and you can just stir it up, wait for it to cool, and serve it. I tend to like sprinkling a little dried parsley on top, more as a garnish than for any significant flavor it brings.
What I like about doing this is that at the end of about forty-five minutes, you get matzo ball chicken noodle soup, savory, filling, and extremely easy to throw together. Is it the same as Mom used to make? Well, no, let’s be honest. But it’s still pretty good, if you feel like having a Jewish comfort food meal, but you don’t feel like getting involved in a major cooking project. You can use any kind of noodle or pasta shape that you have handy, and with the reduced-sodium soup mix, this is reasonably healthy. Plus, you should get several servings out of it, so if you make it on a Sunday, you can have it for dinner a couple of days during the week.