Wednesday Recipe: Matzo Ball Soup


For the Chicken Stock

  • 1 4-5 pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 pound chicken wings, necks, and/or backs
  • 2 large yellow onions unpeeled and quartered
  • 6 celery stalks cut into 1" pieces
  • 4 large carrots peeled, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 large parsnip peeled, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 large shallot quartered
  • 1 head of garlic halved crosswise
  • 6 sprigs of flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns

Matzo Ball Mixture

  • 3 large eggs beaten to blend
  • ¾ cup matzo meal
  • ¼ cup schmaltz (chicken fat) melted
  • 3 tablespoons club soda
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt


  • 2 small carrots peeled, sliced ¼” thick on a diagonal
  • kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh dill
  • Coarsely ground fresh black pepper


Chicken Stock

  • Bring all ingredients and 12 cups cold water to a boil in a very large (at least 12-qt.) stockpot. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until chicken breasts are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
  • Transfer breasts to a plate (remaining chicken parts are strictly for stock). Let breasts cool slightly, then remove meat and return bones to stock. Shred meat. Let cool, tightly wrap, and chill.
  • Continue to simmer stock, skimming surface occasionally, until reduced by one-third, about 2 hours. Strain chicken stock through a fine-mesh sieve into a large saucepan (or airtight container, if not using right away); discard solids. You should have about 8 cups.
  • DO AHEAD: Stock can be made 2 days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill. Keep reserved chicken meat chilled.

Matzo Balls

  • Mix eggs, matzo meal, schmaltz, club soda, and salt in a medium bowl (mixture will resemble wet sand; it will firm up as it rests). Cover and chill for at least 2 hours.
    DO AHEAD: Mixture can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.


  • Bring chicken stock to a boil in a large saucepan. Add carrots; season with salt. Reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender, 5–7 minutes. Remove from heat, add reserved breast meat, and cover. Set soup aside.
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Scoop out 2-tablespoonful portions of matzo ball mixture and, using wet hands, gently roll into balls.
  • Add matzo balls to water and reduce heat so water is at a gentle simmer (too much bouncing around will break them up). Cover pot and cook matzo balls until cooked through and starting to sink, 20–25 minutes.
  • DO AHEAD: Using a slotted spoon, transfer matzo balls to bowls. Ladle soup over, top with dill, and season with pepper.