Rebecca Arnold runs Whole Heart Provisions, the hugely popular veggie-bowl palaces in Allston and Cambridge. If you’ve never had her “Levant” bowl (smashed cucumber, Japanese eggplant, tomato, red cabbage slaw, pickled cauliflower, tahini, harissa, crispy chickpeas, sesame and falafel), well, it’s life-changing. Try it. She’ll open a third Whole Heart at Harvard University’s Smith Campus Center this fall.

She’s also Jewish! In honor of the High Holidays, she shared a few favorite family recipes with JewishBoston, such as vegan matzo ball soup.

“We take our stock and add a whole bunch of carrots, onions and parsnips and cook it down to super-soft and blend it, so it’s thicker soup rather than just clear broth,” Arnold says. “It’s a recipe from my aunt because she couldn’t get her three boys to eat vegetables. It was her little secret. My mom would make it for my friends in college. It’s delicious, and I have it whenever I’m sick.”

Judaism played a role in her culinary life growing up, she says.

“Definitely, a lot of foods I was brought up with were Jewish,” she says. “We had brisket at all the High Holidays, and chicken soup was a staple in my house. To this day, I always have quarts of stock in my freezer.”

And now you can, too. Enjoy!

Vegetable Stock


  • 6 quarts water
  • 10 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 onions, skin included
  • 8 carrots
  • 3 parsnips
  • 8 celery stalks
  • 1 bunch parsley stems
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, whole
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric


  1. Combine everything in a large stock pot.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to a simmer.
  4. Simmer for 1 hour.
  5. Strain, reserving liquid and discarding veggies.



  • 5 carrots
  • 2 parsnips
  • 1 onion
  • 3 celery sticks
  • 5½ quarts stock
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 12 grinds freshly cracked black pepper


  1. Mix all together in a large stock pot.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to a simmer.
  4. Simmer 30-45 minutes until veggies are soft throughout.
  5. Blend with a stick blender.
  6. Season with salt and pepper.

Matzo Balls


  • 1 tablespoon flax
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 5 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • ¾ cup vegetable stock
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ cup matzo meal
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons chickpea flour
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chives
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 grinds freshly cracked black pepper


  1. Mix together flax and water.
  2. Let sit 10 minutes until an egg-like texture has formed.
  3. Add coconut oil, grapeseed oil, vegetable stock and turmeric. Whisk well.
  4. Add matzo meal, nutritional yeast, chickpea flour, herbs and seasoning. Whisk well.
  5. Let rest in the fridge for 20 minutes.
  6. While the mix is resting, bring 6 quarts of water to a boil.
  7. Form the mix into golf-ball-sized balls and add to boiling water.
  8. Bring to a light simmer. Let simmer 15 minutes until cooked through.
  9. With a slotted spoon, add to your stock and enjoy!