Friday, October 30, 2009

Fortifying Myself for Tomorrow

Halloween festivities began today, with the Sag Harbor Elementary School parade. Once again, our music teachers dazzled us with The Monster Mash and our Principal impressed us with his costume. I caught an annoying cold earlier in the week, but I am determined to beat it by tomorrow afternoon when the Pumpkin Trail opens up. So yesterday I made myself a big pot of chicken soup, with matzoh balls, and I've been guzzling it nonstop. How big of a pot was it? I think it has perfumed the whole neighborhood. When you pass by my house on the way to Main Street, you may get the strange sensation that you've been transported to the Lower East Side, where Streit's matzoh meal (look for it at the end of the baking aisle at the IGA) is, for the meantime, still made. Here's the recipe (matzoh balls are straight from the back of the Streit's box; I peeled and cut some carrots to cook right in the finished soup while the matzoh balls poached in another pot):

Chicken Soup with Matzoh Balls

Makes a lot of soup!

2 carrots

2 parsnips

2 onions, peeled

1 bunch parsley or dill

6 to 7 pounds chicken parts (buy whatever is cheapest; I used legs since they were on sale at the IGA)

1 ½ gallons water


Ground black pepper

1.Combine the carrots, parsnips, onions, parsley or dill, and chicken in your biggest stockpot and pour the water in. Bring to a boil, lower the heat so that the water is simmering, and skim of any gray foam as it rises to the top.

2. Cover the pot and continue to simmer until you’ve extracted all of the flavor from the chicken, about 4 hours.
3. Pour the soup through a fine strainer and into a smaller stockpot. Refrigerate the soup overnight, and the next morning skim off and discard the solidified fat. Reheat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add cooked matzoh balls (see above for recipe) and enjoy.

UPDATE: My mother e-mailed, to say I forgot the celery heart! So if you want the original...

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