The Great Matzoh Ball Debate

As a Catholic, I am a clumsy newcomer to Jewish cuisine, but one sip of matzoh ball soup at a friend’s house more than ten years ago has haunted me ever since.

This year, in a burst of courage, I decided to research and attempt to recreate that delicious soup. I was more or less successful. At the end of the day I had soup, after all. But it was no masterpiece. Take a look for yourself:

Undoubtedly, you will recognize a problem just from viewing these pictures. The matzoh balls are too small!

Blame it on a cautious newcomer. As some friends pointed out to me, the matzoh ball should be big and fluffy, something like the one I was served in a diner in South Brunswick, NJ.

I am delighted to find out that I’m not alone in my struggle for matzoh ball perfection. Bonnie Berwick, a food writer for the Washington Post, has tried – and failed – for years to make a just-right matzoh ball on command. Her article, “The Art and Architecture of Matzoh Balls,” is great but I truly devoured the pictures.

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