Friday, April 3, 2015

Heart-Healthy Matzoh Balls

It’s Spring, and Passover begins tonight at sundown. This wonderful holiday commemorates the Jews’ escape from slavery in Egypt, and the pilgrimage to their Holy Land, led by their savior, Moses. Many people are familiar with the storyline thanks to movies like The Ten Commandments starring Charlton Heston, and the latest version of the Exodus, Exodus: Gods and Kings starring Christian Bale.
Passover is celebrated via a huge meal called the Sedar, where every dish has a representation of the Exodus. For instance, bitter herbs for the bitterness of the days of slavery, salt water for the tears, and Apple-Walnut Charoset for the mortar used to build the pyramids.
Perhaps the most infamous Passover dish is Matzoh Ball Soup. Made with a blend of Matzoh Meal, chicken broth, eggs, chicken fat or vegetable oil, salt, and pepper, Matzoh Balls are a delicious treat many look forward to year after year.
matzoh ballsImage via Flickr by moonlightbulb
But there are so many health issues linked to fatty, salty foods, including heart disease and diabetes. Having grown up with heart disease, a subject I talk about in my autobiography My Open Heart, I know it’s important to watch what you eat. Eating a lot of fatty food, such as Matzoh Balls, can be very risky to those who suffer these ailments. Is there a way to enjoy the dish without all of the fat and salt? Yes.
Thanks to a user at food.com, you can now create delicious Matzoh Balls for Passover that are more heart healthy.
Directions:
  1. For the stock the best results come from the chicken bones of an already cooked chicken - so enjoy a chicken dinner and save the bones and the close meat. Cook this until the vegetables are nearly disintegrated. Remember do not add your salt till the boil point has been reached or your stock will be cloudy. Approximately 3 hours.
  2. Cool and strain off all the meat, vegetables and bones. Discard.
  3. Cool and strain off any fats.
  4. For the Matzo Balls: Beat the eggs. Add seltzer, oil, salt and pepper. Mix well.
  5. Add Matzo meal and stir thoroughly. Refrigerate for 1/2 to 1 hour.
  6. Fill a 5 quart pot 3/4 full of water and bring to a rolling boil add 3/4 cup of kosher salt to the water and bring back to rolling boil.
  7. Moisten the palms of your hands with cold water to form your matzo balls - I use a tsp to measure the amount - approximately 1/2" in diameter. Drop matzo balls into boiling water.
  8. Cook for at least 30 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.
Soup:
  1. In a 6 quart pot add 1 tsp of olive oil when heated add your onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Over low heat bring to fork tender.
  2. Add the remainder of the ingredients. Add cooked matzo balls and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes.
By following this recipe, you’ll be able to enjoy delicious Matzoh Balls on Passover without the health risks.