Home is where the food is. And for the first time in a long time, I’m heading home to Florida to visit my parents. I’m looking forward to beaches with warm water, people who think it’s appropriate to dress like Jimmy Buffet on a daily basis, my mom’s cooking and of course, seeing my dog. (Oh, and my parents, that goes without saying, right?)
Something I’m not looking forward to? Spending a full day on a plane full of people, while coming down with the dreaded pre-vacation cold. You’d think Mom’s cooking would be the perfect prescription. She always said the best way to get over a cold is with “Jewish Penicillin,” AKA matzo ball soup. But my mom refuses to cook matzo ball soup; she insists her matzo balls, without fail, come out “like hockey pucks.”
So, the search is on for a reputable matzo ball on the Westside, or at least a decent recipe that I can try myself.
I will say that I have tried many bad matzo balls on the Westside. Soggy, too dense… I won’t name names but I will tell you that one deli doesn’t even have noodles in their matzo ball soup. I’m sorry, but this is sacrilege in my book. As my friend Liz says, “matzo ball’s not just a soup, it’s like a bowl full of carb.”
We’ve all heard the raves about Jerry’s Famous Deli and I’ll concede also that Junior’s on Westwood is alright. My friend Kevin swears by Langers. Just visiting their website will make you salivate, and even Jonathan Gold can’t refuse their hot pastrami. By the way, Mr. Gold also recommends The Gorbals’ bacon wrapped matzo ball with horseradish mayonnaise.
What’s your favorite?
I know, of course, that the best option is to actually go to someone’s house who’s cooking it for you. Some of my friends have also admitted (in secret) that they simply use the recipe from the back of the matzo box.
So, matzo me. Tell me about your favorite delis or your favorite recipe and I’ll try my hand at the first successful family matzo ball. I’ll let you know if I make it past “hockey puck” status.