By Shannon Sarna
(JTA) A few years ago when I was out in Los Angeles visiting my family, my brother insisted we head to Canter’s Deli, an iconic Jewish deli that has been around since 1931. I am never one to turn down some good Jewish comfort food, and was thrilled to order a big bowl of matzah ball soup on a cool, rainy December night to share with my then 2 year old daughter. The bowl was filled to the brim with not only a larger-than-life matzah ball, but kreplach, rice and noodles. That’s right – it was a matzah ball carb fest, and it was glorious.
Since that visit, I have been loading up my matzah ball soup with rice and matzah balls, sometimes alphabet noodles or ramen noodles per my daughter’s request, and even awesome store-bought dumplings. If you are feeling adventurous, you can certainly try making your own meat kreplach. Although I have been opting for these store-bought Kosher’us veal or beef pelmeni I buy at Shop Rite or our local kosher butcher.
The key to making a good loaded matzo ball soup is to keep all the ingredients separate until serving. After making soup, remove the veggies and the chicken and store them in separate containers until ready to serve.
Or if you decide to use store-bought chicken broth, cook your rice, noodles and matzah balls separately, and then build the bowl of soup for each individual. This is truly the ultimate Jewish comfort food on a cool night, or any time you need a little chicken soup love.
Loaded Matzah Ball Soup
4 quarts prepared chicken soup
cooked egg noodles, alphabet noodles or other preferred noodles
kreplach (either homemade or store-bought)
Prepare chicken soup. Can be made 1-2 days ahead of time.
Prepare cooked rice, noodles and/or kreplach according to directions.
Place rice, noodles, matzah balls and kreplach into soup bowls. Top with shredded, cooked chicken and carrots if desired.
Ladle soup on top. Serve hot.