- large red potatoes - 2 lbs
- egg - 1
- potato starch - 1/4 cup
- blanched almond meal - 1 1/2 - 2 cups
- Salt and white pepper -
- Note Make sure your potato starch and almond meal are certified GF.
Place a large pot of salted water on the stove to boil. Scrub the unpeeled potatoes till clean. Boil the unpeeled potatoes until tender—it will take about 45 minutes. Drain. Allow potatoes to cool to room temperature. Peel the skin from the potatoes and discard. Chop the peeled potatoes into large chunks. Place in the refrigerator and chill until they are cold all the way through (at least 2 hours). You can refrigerate them overnight, if you need to.
Place a fresh pot of salted water on the stove to boil. From this point on, work quickly, or refrigerate the ingredients between steps. The potato mixture works best when it’s cold. Remove potatoes from refrigerator and pat them dry if any moisture has accumulated. Place potatoes in a bowl and mash them with a potato masher or run them through a ricer. Mash again with a fork to get out as many lumps as possible.
Mix in the egg, potato starch, 1 1/2 cups of almond meal, 1 1/4 tsp salt and a pinch of white pepper to form a dough. If the dough seems sticky, or if you prefer a denser and heavier matzo ball (aka “sinkers”), you can add more almond meal.
By now your water should be boiling. Turn the stove heat down until the water is nearly boiling—the water should be “shivering” slightly, just on the verge of a boil. Form potato dough into balls using 1/4 cup of dough for each. Gently place the knaidelach into the hot water. The dumplings will sink to the bottom of the pot and slowly rise as they cook.
Cook knaidelach uncovered in batches of 4-5 at a time; do not cook more than that or they will stick together and fall apart in the pot. The dumplings will lose a little bit of their potato coating as they cook, but should retain their shape. Let the knaidelach cook for 10-15 minutes, then remove them with a slotted spoon and transfer to a dish. Keep the dumplings covered with a clean, damp towel until ready to serve.
Serve 1 or 2 knaidelach per bowl of soup. They go great in chicken soup as an alternative to matzo balls (if you need a recipe, check out My Favorite Chicken Soup recipe on TheShiksa.com). They can also be added to vegetarian soup or cholent.
Tori Avey lives in Southern California. She is a food writer, recipe developer, and the creator of two cooking websites: The Shiksa in the Kitchen and The History Kitchen. She explores the story behind the food – why we eat what we eat, how the foods of different cultures have evolved, and how yesterday’s food can inspire us in the kitchen today. Tori writes a bimonthly culinary history blog for PBS Food; her food writing and photography have appeared on Bon Appetit, CNN, Zabar’s, Williams-Sonoma and The Huffington Post. TheShiksa.com was recently named the IACP People’s Choice Award winner for Best Culinary Website.
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