Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Matzoh Balls

In the event that I have generated confusion, the image below is gefilte fish being poached. Apart from the shape, they look scarcely different from matzoh balls. Regarding which I must admit I have always been an ardent advocate of dense cannonballs and I think I even included a recipe for them in The Lost Arts. But I think I might actually be going over to the other camp to join the denizens of the light, aethereal and fluffy. Yesterday I was about to mix up a batch as I do customarily and I thought why do I always make maztoh balls like this? Last year they were literally leaden and took a week to digest. Time to try something new. I readily confess I had no bloody idea what I was doing here, moreover I violated a cardinal rule of the holiday as you will see. If like me you don't mind breaking rules to get something done, do try these. Start with a good pot of chicken stock. Then mix a cup of matzoh meal with 2 tablespoons melted duck fat, 3 eggs, a sprinkle of salt, a teaspoon of baking powder, and about a quarter cup of Sierra Nevada. (I know, illicit, but tastes so much better than seltzer). Add more meal until they are barely rollable. Make walnut sized balls and drop one by one into simmering stock. They will rise. After about 30 minutes add in chopped parsnip, carrots, celery and onion and a generous amount of fresh dill. Continue cooking for another 30 minutes. The matzoh balls will be huge, poufy like clouds and delicate in flavor. If you must play by the book, use bubbly water. I can't wait to try this exact same recipe with good homemade breadcrumbs next week. OH just imagine beef broth and stout in the dumplings, with a hint of allspice. I might need to do this now and just forget the bread of affliction.   

1 comment:

Ken Albala said...

P.S. In case you're wondering what else there was, a large leg of lamb, opened and seasoned with zaatar, smoked paprika and sumac, retied and then slowly barbecued. It was incredible. "Burnt" stringbeans. About 50 pounds of mashed potatoes. Charoset of course. Fresh horseradish. Pickled eggs.