We had a wonderful housewarming party last weekend, but somewhere between there and Wednesday, I picked up a bad cold. What ever is a girl to do? Of course, I made matzo ball soup.

Matzo Ball Soup

There are many variations on matzo ball soup. Some people add parsley and other fresh herbs to their matzo balls or stock. And don’t even get me started on the sink or swim debate over those little kneidlach. (Mine are swimmers.) Add garlic, add a teaspoon of tomato paste, make it vegetarian/parve, change up the veggies, and on and on. But when I’m sick and just need something that requires minimal thinking (not to mention the fact that I can’t taste anything anyways), this is the recipe I refer to:

Ahava’s Penicillan (aka basic matzo ball soup):

For the matzo balls:

  • 1/2 cup matzo meal
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbs stock
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • salt, pepper
  1. Mix together all ingredients, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the stock:

  • 1 quart stock, either veggie or chicken
  • 1 medium white onion, diced
  • four carrots, diced
  • 1 medium head of celery, diced
  • 1lb chicken, cubed, optional
  • olive oil
  • salt, pepper
  1. In a dutch oven or large pot, heat olive oil over med-high.
  2. (optional) If you’re using chicken, brown on all sides, then remove from pan and set aside.
  3. Add onion and a pinch of salt, cook until soft and translucent.
  4. Add the celery and carrot, cook for another minute or so
  5. Add 1/4 cup or so of the stock, scraping the pan with a wooden spoon to pick up any bits from the bottom.
  6. Pour in the rest of the stock, return the chicken to the pan.
  7. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer.
  8. Take matzo meal mix from fridge, then use a small ice cream (cookie) scoop to drop balls of the matzo mixture into the soup.
  9. Cover and simmer for 40 mins or more. Of course, the longer you let it simmer, the more flavor it will have.
  10. Eat and feel better.