Corn Ball & Chicken Soup

“Matzo”-Style Cornmeal Dumplings in Chicken Broth with Pulled Chicken, Collard Greens, and Black-Eyed Peas

It being the occasion of Passover this week(end), the number of pictures of seder meals and dishes are higher than usual.

And images really homey and tasty-looking matzoh ball soups reminded me of the time I decided to do a southern-inspired version on the Jewish cuisine staple.

... Instead of trying to make an authentic traditional matzo ball soup, I decided to add a little soul food twist to the dish (and doesn’t every culture have their own version of “soul food”?) by substituting cornmeal for matzo meal, using rendered fat instead of rendered chicken fat (often called shmaltz), and replacing carrots and celery with collard green and black-eyed peas.

I have great respect for the process of making matzoh balls, as I employed the same numerous steps to make these cornmeal balls — first separating the egg yolks from the whites, mixing the yolks with the bacon fat, chicken stock, salt, pepper, a pinch of both garlic and onion powder, and finely chopped fresh tarragon, then whisking the egg whites to stiff peaks and folded them into the mix before chilling in the refrigerator for a couple of hours.

Adding chicken stewed with fresh rosemary, fresh cracked peppercorns, chopped collard greens, and blackeyed peas perfectly rounded out the whole culinary experience, being familiarly delicious yet feeling like a new and unique eating experience.

Clean, rich, and yummy, I just wish I atill had a "bobeshi" of my own around who would have the necessary time to make this for me, you know, while I'm too busy writing about it.