Chicken soup

This warming chicken broth is a traditional Jewish recipe that reminds Jamie Cullum of home. Try it with challah bread for a filling family meal

  • Prep:30 mins
    Cook:4 hrs
    plus overnight chilling
  • Serves 8
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 375
  • fat 20g
  • saturates 5g
  • carbs 18g
  • sugars 7g
  • fibre 4g
  • protein 28g
  • salt 1.4g


  • 1 chicken with extra giblets (use kosher chicken, if you like)
  • 3 chicken stock cubes (use kosher stock, if you like)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 2 onions, peeled, root intact
  • 2 celery sticks, sliced
  • 1 swede, peeled and cut into chunks
  • ½ small pack parsley, roughly chopped
  • Challah bread, to serve (optional)
  • 1 ½ tbsp fat from the chicken soup
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 100g matzo meal


  1. Wipe the chicken with kitchen paper and put in a large saucepan with the giblets. Cover with water and bring to the boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer. Skim away any scum with a large spoon or ladle every few mins for about 30 mins until no more comes to the surface. Crumble in the stock cubes and add the bay leaf, peppercorns and vegetables.

  2. Bring to the boil again, then reduce the heat to very low. Cover and simmer gently for 3-3 1 /2 hrs.

  3. Leave the soup to cool a little, then transfer to the fridge overnight.

  4. Once chilled, the fat from the soup will rise to the top. Save 11 /2 tbsp for the matzo balls and set aside, then use a large spoon to remove as much as you can. Remove the chicken, shred all the meat, then add it back to the pan. Put the soup back on the heat and skim away any remaining fat while you bring it to the boil.

  5. Meanwhile, make the matzo balls by combining the fat, egg, matzo meal and 1/2 tbsp warm water. Stir into a paste, adding a little more water if needed, then chill for 10-15 mins. Roll into about 12 small balls. Dampen your hands if the mixture is too sticky.

  6. Drop the matzo balls into the soup for a few mins. Scatter with parsley and serve with challah bread, if you like.

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