First make chicken stock. You can use this recipe or simply combine 4-5.5 lbs chicken parts (backs, necks, wings, etc...) with 1 onion (coarsely chopped), 1 carrot (peeled and coarsely chopped), 1 celery (coarsely chopped), 1- 2 bay leaves. Simmer, uncovered for 3 hours, adding water as needed to cover. Strain into a clean pot. Let cool, uncovered, then freeze or refrigerate.
If you are the kind who usually makes stock, it's worth it to get a gravy separator to remove the fat. We own this one.
For the Matzo Ball:
Beat on medium speed for 1 minute:
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
If desired, stir in (optional):
1/2 cup finely diced fennel; 2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill and 4 teaspoons snipped fresh or dried chives; or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley and 2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon soda water
Fold in until well blended:
1 cup matzo meal
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon curry powder (optional)
1 to 2 teaspoons finely chopped peeled fresh ginger, or 1 teaspoon ground (optional)
Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.
With wet or oiled hands ( I prefer oiled), form the matzo balls. Drop the balls into a large pot of boiling salted water, cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 20 minutes. When the matzo balls are almost finished , heat in a soup pot 6 cups of chicken stock.
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper (optional)
When the matzo balls are finished, add them to the stock. Ladle the stock into warmed bowls and add 2 matzo balls to each serving.
Makes about 12 to 14 large balls. This recipe is from Joy of Cooking. It's simple, good, and filling so we like it.