Chicken Matzo Ball Soup
The key to great chicken matzo ball soup is slow-cooking the soup and using boxed matzo ball mix. Some people swear by seltzer, but I find it’s not necessary. The boxed mix makes perfect, fluffy matzo balls every time due to the baking powder in the mix. Add chicken fat (schmaltz) for extra authentic flavor straight from Grandma's kitchen. —Shannon Sarna, South Orange, New Jersey
Total TimePrep: 30 min. + chilling Cook: 1-1/2 hrs. + simmering
Makes26 servings (6-1/2 quarts)
- 1 broiler/fryer chicken (3 to 4 pounds)
- 1 pound chicken wings
- 6 quarts water
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 2 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium turnip, peeled and chopped
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 bunch fresh dill sprigs
- 1 bunch fresh parsley sprigs
- 1-1/2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
- 3 teaspoons salt
- MATZO BALLS:
- 1 package (5 ounces) matzo ball mix
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/4 cup safflower oil
- 1/4 cup rendered chicken fat
- 2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
- 10 cups water
- Place chicken and wings in a stockpot; add water, vegetables, herbs, and seasonings. Slowly bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 1-2 hours.
- Remove chicken and wings and cool. Strain broth through a cheesecloth-lined colander; reserve vegetables. Skim fat. Remove meat from bones and cut into bite-sized pieces; discard bones. Return broth, vegetables and meat to pot. If using immediately, skim fat. Or cool broth, then refrigerate 8 hours or overnight; remove fat from surface before using. (Broth may be refrigerated up to 3 days or frozen 4-6 months.)
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat matzo ball mix, eggs, oil, chicken fat, dill and parsley until combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- In another stockpot, bring water to a boil. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of matzo ball dough into boiling water. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until a toothpick inserted into a matzo ball comes out clean (do not lift cover while simmering), 20-25 minutes.
- Carefully remove matzo balls from water with a slotted spoon; place one matzo ball in each soup bowl. Add soup.