Nana’s Matzah Balls

Of all of the dishes and meals that make Nana an amazing cook, her matzah ball soup stands out as undeniably one of the best. Each year, we look forward to the Jewish holidays so that we can have a big bowl and leftovers for weeks to come! As years have passed, we have found it easier to prepare some of the key ingredients for our Passover Seder in advance to offload some of the work day on the day of the holiday. One of those items are matzah balls. We worked with Nana to prepare, cook and ultimately freeze our matzah balls for dinner this Saturday. Even though we have the recipe written down, it is so different watching her cook them and seeing how the recipe and her preparation differ. She loves a good cooking moment in front of the camera, so be sure to check out her full video on our Instagram.

Nana's Matzah Balls

  • Servings: 12 matzah balls
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The recipe for Nana’s famous matzah balls.

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup matzah meal
  • 4 tbs oil or chicken fat
  • 4 tbs soda water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 10 cups of water
  • chicken bouillon (enough to flavor 10 cups of water according to the bouillon directions)

Directions

  1. In a medium sized bowl, beat the eggs using a hand mixer or stand mixer.
  2. Add the matzah meal, chicken fat, soda water, salt and pepper and mix well until all of the ingredients are fully blended together. Refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes.
  3. While the matzah ball dough is refrigerating, heat a large pot with 10 cups of water and bring to a boil. Add the chicken bullion and simmer with the lid on while the batter is cooling. You want to add in enough to flavor the water.
  4. Bring the broth back to boil. Remove the matzah ball batter from the fridge and form the matzo ball dough into golf ball sized balls. Place them in the broth, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook the matzah balls for 1 hour.
  5. Remove the matzah balls with a slotted spoon and place on a cookie sheet to cool and drain. Serve immediately in chicken soup or cool completely and freeze until you are ready to use them. Freeze by placing them in a single layer in a large ziplock bag.


Labneh with Parsley & Pistachio Pesto

Passover is one of our favorite Jewish holidays because of the symbolism of the Seder. It’s always the holiday we bring non-Jewish friends to (pre-Covid) to learn about being Jewish. If you are not a member of the tribe and have been invited to a Sedar, you may have shown up starving and realized that you are in for a long night. (For a great rendition of this panic, watch this skit by Sebastian Maniscalco) To avoid the Sedar starvation panic, we usually start our Passover with a light appetizer before we begin. This recipe for Labneh with Parsley & Pistachio Pesto is perfect for any occasion and a great recipe to welcome in Spring. We use the term “pesto” loosely, as the topping for the labneh is everything we love in a pistachio pesto, but we haven’t blended the ingredients together. The result is lots of bright flavors on top of the creamy labneh with an extra crunch from the pistachios.

Labneh with Parsley & Pistachio Pesto

  • Servings: 6
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  The perfect appetizer for your Passover seder or any spring gathering.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups labneh (you can substitute whole milk Greek yogurt)
  • 2 cups packed parsley leaves
  • 3/4 cup pistachios
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Spread the labneh into an even layer in a shallow small serving bowl or a small salad plate. Set aside.
  2. Put the parsley leaves, pistachios, and garlic into a food processor. Pulse the blender to finely chop the ingredients. Do not over-blend the ingredients, you are just looking for a fine chop. Remove the parsley mixture from the blender into a small bowl. Add the lemon zest and chili flakes to the parsley, stir to combine.
  3. Start by adding about half of the recommended olive oil to the parsley mix. You want the mixture to have the consistency of wet sand, but not drowning in olive oil. Add up to the full amount of 1/3 cup if necessary. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Dollop the parsley mix on top of the labneh. Serve with a variety of fresh vegetable and matzah, if desired.