These delicate dumplings are so comforting and have always been at the top of my holiday favorites list. Last year I posted about my long held belief that my matzo balls were the best (see the post here) and about my unpleasant discovery that Brian's mother made them better. She claimed Crisco was the secret to fluffiness and I dutifully followed suit. The result was indeed softer than my previous recipe but I just didn't care for the taste and texture of that particular shortening.
The Shiksa in the Kitchen and she claimed the secret to lighter matzo balls was baking powder. Hmm... That actually sounded like it would work so I quickly made a batch. And work it does, don'tcha know! No Crisco needed (I much prefer canola oil) and lightness and fluffiness achieved. We don't keep such a strict Passover kitchen but for those of you that question the appropriateness of baking powder for Passover, the Shiksa explains that it is actually a mineral and not a grain. However, I'm going to let her explain to you here.
1/2 Cup matzo meal
2 Tablespoons shortening (I used canola oil)
1 Teaspoon salt
3/4 Teaspoon baking powder
1 Tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
In a bowl, whisk all the ingredients together and refrigerate for approximately 30 minutes. Form ball of dough either with your hands or with a scoop and drop them into a large pot of boiling water. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 30 minutes. When done, gently remove the dumplings from the water (they will have expanded significantly in the cooking). I use a slotted spoon for this since the dumplings are delicate. Serve hot with your favorite chicken soup. I make my matzo balls with a 1 oz. scoop and this recipe makes 8.