new york shows its strong ties to jewish culture in subtle ways-like the fact that you can walk into almost any diner in the city and get a bowl of matzoh-ball soup. this week is passover, a time when smooth or lumpy, leaden or fluffy matzoh balls-kneydlach, in yiddish-will be ladled into bowls across the city. if you're at a seder, as i will be, you will wait a long time for your matzoh ball to materialize, after perhaps an hour of readings in hebrew and lifting your wine glass many times and putting it down again.
for instant matzoh-ball gratification i can think of no better place than city diner. i had ordered a bowl ($3.25) and gotten up to use the ladies room. when i came back, two large matzoh balls floating in a steaming chicken broth already awaited me. why is this matzoh ball unlike any other? matzoh balls must be light and fluffy, but also firm, and they should not shred into your soup. city diner's meet the test admirably. they are lightly flavored with dill; and while you can slice them neatly with your spoon, they still melt in your mouth. happy pesach!
city diner 2441 broadway (near 90th street) 212-877-2720