Roasted Tomato & Basil Soup with Herby Matza Balls

Immersive Ten Plagues Seder Menu: Plagues 1 & 2 – Blood & Frogs

Serves 6

Prep time: 30 mins | Cooking time: 2h 10mins

We wanted something warming to start the meal and while chicken soup might be traditional for many a festive feast, opening with tomato soup might just spark the question, ‘Why is this night different?’ This delicious soup is a winner all year through, and it freezes and reheats well, too. Served with our herby green, ‘Frog’ Matza balls, this is a tasty and dramatic opening to one of the most important meals of the year. It is hard to get the depth of colour here, and what we will say is that once the soup has settled we found it deepened in terms of red hue. We add a tin of tomatoes in the last part of the cooking process to help with colour, but you can also try adding roasted red peppers if you prefer. 


For the Soup

  • 1.5kg fresh Tomatoes (around 12 medium-sized tomatoes)— the reddest you can find. We used vine tomatoes, but you can use any really. You can also try this with baby tomatoes.
  • ½ cup Olive Oil (plus a little extra for frying)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 4 cloves Garlic crushed
  • 30g (½ cup) fresh Basil torn
  • 250-300g (5-6 cups) Carrots peeled and chopped
  • 3 sticks Celery chopped
  • 175g (3 heaped cups) Onion diced 
  • 1 Stock Cube (we used vegetable but you could use beef or chicken for a meatier flavour)
  • 2 litres boiling Water (could supplement with fresh vegetable or chicken stock)
  • 1 tin chopped Tomatoes

For the Herby ‘Frogtza’ Balls (Kneidlach)

  • 120g (1 cup) Matza Meal (we used fine, but you can use medium)
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder*
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Pinch of Garlic Powder
  • 20g (⅓ cup) fresh Basil very finely chopped (as small as you can make it)
  • 20g (⅓ cup) fresh Parsley very finely chopped (as small as you can make it)
  • 4 Eggs
  • 30ml (2 tbsp) Olive Oil

* For an alternative recipe using sparkling water/seltzer, click here, or add herbs to your favourite recipe.


For the Soup

Prep time: 30 mins | Cooking time: 2h 10mins

  1. Preheat your oven to 200°C / 180°C fan (Gas Mark 6 / 400°F) 
  2. Chop your tomatoes into halves or quarters (depending how big your tomatoes are). If using baby tomatoes you can leave these whole)
  3. Using a blender combine your olive oil, garlic, basil, salt and pepper to taste (we used 1tsp of salt and ½ tsp of black pepper)
  4. Once combined, place your tomatoes in a large baking pan and pour over your basil/garlic dressing. Mix to generously coat all the tomatoes and roast for 1hr, stirring half way through. 
  5. Separately in a heavy-bottomed pot or stockpot, heat 1tbsp of olive oil and add your onion, carrots and celery and a pinch of salt, cook until softened, around 15-20mins on a medium to high heat.
    Gently stir throughout to stop it catching. 
  6. Once softened, crumble in a stock cube and stir gently to combine, allow to cook for another few minutes until the stock cube has been combined and then turn off and leave to one side until your tomatoes are ready. 
  7. Once your tomatoes are ready, pour them into the stockpot (including all the cooking liquid) and replace it to the stove, mix your tomatoes, onions, carrots, celery and add one can of cooked tin tomatoes (this is largely to help deepen the red colouring more than for flavour).
  8. Bring to the boil, then turn down to a simmer for 1 hour. 
  9. Once ready, blitz the soup in a food processor and your tomato soup… or should we say blood, is ready. 

For the Herby ‘Frogtza’ Balls (Kneidlach)

Prep time: 30 mins | Chilling time: 1h 30 mins | Cooking time: 5-10 mins

  1. Combine the first 4 ingredients (your dry ingredients) in a large bowl. 
  2. Now it’s time to add the ‘green’ element.
    The key to these herby Matza balls is to get the herbs as finely diced as you can, so use a good knife, take your time, we promise it’s worth it. 
  3. Keeping a small amount aside for garnish, add in the chopped herbs slowly and combine­–you may find all 40g of herbs too much, so add and combine as you go. You can always use any excess to decorate your soup, but do make sure your mixture is really green and herb laden. 
  4. In a separate bowl, beat your eggs and add the oil, combining them together. 
  5. Sowly pour the egg and oil mixture into your dry mixture and combine. If it feels too loose, add a little matza meal a spoonful at a time until it can hold its form.
  6. Place the mixture in the fridge covered with cling film for about 30 minutes.
  7. Once chilled, form into small balls, about the size of walnuts. This recipe will make between 20 and 30, depending on the size of your Matza balls.
  8. Place on a cling film-lined tray and freeze (preferably overnight—this also means any you aren’t using can be ziplocked and kept until needed)
  9. To cook through, fill a pan with boiling water and drop the Matza balls in, cooking for 5-10 minutes—you should see them fluff up. Drain and leave to one side to cool. 
  10. Bring to room temperature before serving in your tomato soup, and use the saved herbs as garnish.

Photo credit: Sophy Weiss Photography

Roasted Tomato Soup with Herby Matza Balls