Don’t poach the purple peppers…

I was asked recently for some of my recipes, so I thought I would post a few here for the culinary curious minds. Post #1:

Chicken Matzohball Soup

1 onion
1 bunch celery
1 normal sized bag of regular carrots (or 2 16 oz bags baby carrots if you really don’t want to peel them)
Parsley (you’re only going to use half a bunch, so think of another use for the rest of it)
Chicken (6 thighs is usually good, yes, you need the skins)
1 tbsp salt (more or less depending on how salty you like it, I opt for slightly less myself)
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp garlic powder (or, two cloves garlic, chopped, fresh is recommended, and there’s another optional thing to do with it**)
Several dashes basil
Several (but fewer) dashes oregano
8 cups water
4 cups chicken broth (although you can just do 12 cups water, it’s nicer to start with chicken broth)
Two “sleeves” of saltines (you can use matzoh..but it’s a bit easier to use saltines, 1 box matzoh should do it otherwise)
4-5 eggs (4 should do it, but if it isn’t sticking together when you’ve mixed it, )

*Start heating the water/chicken broth in large pot on medium.

*Chop celery leaves off, throw them in
*Trim brown bits and ends off celery, put clean stalks in.
*Remove all stems from parsley, chop up leaves and cast them into the water.
*Remove outer layers of onion, chop off roots and put in whole. (Unless you loooove onion, which I do not. If you do, chop up onion)
*Peel and cut up carrots into 2-3″ lengths, put ’em in (or the baby carrots.)
*Clean chicken, remove skins and set aside, bones can be left in for now, toss in soup!
*Start dashing in seasons and mixing–chop up garlic if using fresh

–you need a large bowl for the next bit–
Get a frying pan start frying the chicken skins, they should be crispy when done, set aside
**you may also chop up some garlic and add it to the chicken skin frying process

*In a large bowl, crush saltines (or matzoh) into a sandy consistency (I like mine a little lumpy still)
*Beat up 4 eggs , make sure to insult them thoroughly, mix them into the saltines/matzoh
*add 1 tsp salt
*add 3 tbsp of the simmering chicken broth/soup
*add a little of the schmaltz from the frying pan (chicken fat)
*(keeping the skins for this is optional, but you do need some of the chicken fat, do what you like with the skins otherwise) Break chicken skins into small pieces (you probably won’t use all of these) don’t use chewy bits, just crunchy and place some pieces of them and some of the garlic pieces into a lump of the matzoh/saltine mixture as you roll it into a ball –this should make 12-14 matzoh balls, they only need to be a little under 2″ in diameter

Put matzohballs on plate and let sit in fridge for 30 minutes. At this point the soup should have been simmering for about 30 minutes, in another 20 minutes the chicken should be thoroughly cooked, check–when it IS…remove chicken from soup, de-bone and set aside in a bowl.

*Remove onion and throw away (unless you love onion, then leave it in)
*Remove all large pieces of celery, chop one or two to put back in later.
*The matzohballs should have been sitting in the cold for 30 minutes at this point, so put them in the soup, raise temperature to a boil, and cover.
Check every 15 minutes or so, and turn over matzohballs, they should be thoroughly cooked in about 30 minutes, but cut one open and check, if the inside is chewy-looking, or a different color in the middle, they’re not done.

When matzohballs are done, put chopped celery and chicken back in the soup, simmer for another 10 minutes and viola! Yummy super soup! 

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