Udon Noodles with Knaidel
At the 2013 National Spelling Bee, “Knaidel” was the word that won for 13-year old Arvind Mahankali the giant championship trophy. Not long after that, a controversy ensued over the correct spelling of the word, with America’s Yiddish authority, known as YIVO, claiming that the correct spelling was “Kneydl.”
You say Kneydl, I say Knaidel. All that matters is that this traditional Jewish meal which is basically a dumpling made of matzo meal usually served in soup is quite a culinary delight.
I have been wanting to prepare Knaidel for some time now, but I procrastinated because I wanted to cook up a recipe that could possibly combine this Jewish traditional meal with some non-traditional ingredients. The light bulb in my head came on while I was shopping at a Japanese grocery store in San Jose. So, here it is.
One 10.5 oz can, Matzo Balls in chicken broth
One 6 oz package of Udon noodles
4-5 slices of steamed fish cake, preferably the pink and white spiral (available at many Asian groceries)
4 pieces, dried shitake mushrooms
4 cups water
1 packet dashi powdered soup stock
1 stem green onion, chopped
Soak the shitake mushrooms in warm water for about 15 minutes to soften. In a medium soup pot, bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Add the dashi soup powder and stir well. Reduce heat to medium. Drain the can of Matzo balls, discarding the broth, and add to the pan. Add the Udon, mushrooms and fish cakes. Let simmer for two minutes. Turn off heat. Serve on a soup bowl and garnish with green onions.