Wednesday, December 03, 2008

the upside of a thanksgiving chicken

Matzo ball soup, made from scratch. The carcass of our Thanksgiving chicken made a delicious soup that I believe has bone-healing properties. At least for my poor Jewish boy. He took one look at the soup and said "It looks just like my mom's!". I guess that's about as good a compliment as I could ask for from him. Recipe after the jump:


For the stock:
1 chicken carcass
4 quarts water, or enough to completely cover the carcass
1 onion, halved
2 carrots, halved
2 ribs celery, halved
various fresh herbs, tied in a bouquet garni (I used thyme, sage, and rosemary. Use whatever you have on hand.)
salt and pepper, to taste

For the matzo balls:
1 cup matzo meal
3 eggs
2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp seltzer, optional
salt and pepper

For the soup:
1 recipe chicken stock
2 carrots, cut into coins
1 onion, diced
3 tablespoons fresh dill
1 recipe matzo balls

To make the stock: In a large stockpot, cover the chicken carcass with water. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and bouquet garni. Bring to a boil, then lower to a rolling simmer. Simmer for at least 3 hours. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the carcass and set aside to cool. Remove the aromatics and discard. Strain if desired.

For the soup: after straining the stock, pick the chicken meat off of the carcass and add back to the stock with the carrots, onion and dill. Bring to a boil and add the matzo balls.

For the matzo balls: Beat the eggs and oil together, then add the matzo meal, salt, pepper, and seltzer and stir just until it comes together. Shape into small balls about 1-inch in diameter and drop into the boiling stock. Cook for 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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