Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Jar of Sadness: Premade Matzoh Ball Soup

Let's say you're busy, and you're at work, and you're not feeling all that great. What could be better than some matzoh ball soup? The warm, savory goodness. The fond childhood memories. Sounds like a plan, right?

It is, but only if you happen to live near a restaurant that serves one (and if you do, I am jealous and I kind of hate you), or if you have time to make some from scratch. Much as I wanted to love it, matzoh ball soup in jar form just turned out to be kind of depressing.

"It'll be like getting a warm hug from Bubbe!"

I wanted to like it. I really, really did, especially since the only other food I had in my office was some leftover falafel and a bunch of frozen peas, which is not really the greatest combination, as meals go. But it was just... not quite right. The matzoh balls had disintegrated in the broth a bit; the broth itself was overly salty, even compared to the normal powder broth mix. To be fair, I normally add  more water than is recommended when using the powdered mix, so this may just be a personal preference. And the vegetables! The vegetables were just sad little memories of what a carrot used to be, lurking at the bottom of the bowl like flakes of fish food.
My recommendation: if you anticipate wanting matzoh ball soup at a time when you won't be able to make it fresh, make the balls ahead of time and store them separately from the broth. Then mix with the broth and vegetables, and microwave that. It's what your Bubbe would want you to do.


  1. I think I would always turn to falafel over something out of a jar, but I guess that's me.
    I actually have a package of Lipton's matzo ball soup mix I picked up several weeks ago. Now I feel like doing my own matzo ball soup review...

  2. You should do it! I actually really like the Lipton's mix. One thing I particularly appreciate, odd as this may sound, is that they always list an expiration date on their packaging. When you live in an area with few Jews (and therefore, presumably a somewhat low population of people who will be purchasing stuff like matzoh ball soup mix) I always worry about how long something has been sitting on the shelf if it doesn't have an expiration date.