The simple soup served at traditional Passover Seders is very much like this one (other than the fact that it’s usually made with chicken broth). Sometimes it has even fewer veggies in it than this version. Truth be told, the Passover soup course functions primarily as a delivery system for matzo balls. And so here you have it, after a lot of trial and error, vegan matzo ball soup.
Egg, the traditional binding ingredient for matzo balls, is the challenging ingredient to replace. And ultimately, the binding ingredient is quinoa flakes, which you can read more about in the recipe for Vegan Matzo Balls. I recommend making them first. You can make them ahead of time, or start the soup while they’re in the oven.
Yes, my vegan matzo balls are baked rather than cooked, which eliminates the danger of them falling apart while simmering in water. Baked matzo balls might seem weird, but it works very well, and they’re so easy to make. The result: a bowl of pure comfort.
Recipe adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas.
- Vegan Matzo Balls (see link in instructions)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- One 32-ounce carton vegetable broth
- 6 medium potatoes, peeled and finely diced
- 6 to 8 medium carrots, sliced
- Handful of celery leaves
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose seasoning (like Frontier® or Mrs. Dash®)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, or to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- I like to start the vegan matzo balls before starting the soup, so head on over to that recipe first. You can also make them ahead of time.
- Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion and celery and sauté over medium heat until golden.
- Add the broth, potato, carrots, celery leaves, seasoning blend, and 2 cups of water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then cover and simmer gently for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the dill, then season with salt and pepper. If time allows, let the soup stand for several hours off the heat to develop flavor. This can also be made a day in advance.
- Just before serving, bring to a simmer. Adjust the consistency with more water if need be, and taste to adjust seasonings. Add warmed matzo balls to individual servings of soup.
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 192 Total Fat: 4g Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 3g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 510mg Carbohydrates: 37g Fiber: 5g Sugar: 5g Protein: 4g
Baked vegan matzo balls: Unusual, but really good!
Quinoa for Passover
Quinoa, ancient grain that it is, has become the new kid on the block for use during Passover, a holiday week when many (if not most) grains and grain products aren’t used. In the Sephardic tradition, there’s more leeway. Why quinoa is acceptable and other grains aren’t has a complicated answer that I’m not equipped to give.
Suffice it to say that quinoa is now just as welcome at the Passover table as it is at any other meal of the year. Ancient Harvest® has a line of products that are Kosher; some are Kosher for Passover, but it’s not clear whether that utmost designation applies to their quinoa flakes. Pereg® also offers Kosher for Passover quinoa products, which includes their quinoa flakes.