Traditional Matzah

Eating matzah is a yearly event, yet more than maybe any other Jewish food, matzah is almost always store-bought rather than homemade. This isn’t surprising given all of the rules that must be followed to ensure that it is kosher, but it’s incredibly simple to make at home with limited ingredients in a short amount of time. 

Matzah is the quintessential food of desperate times, so here is a simple and delicious recipe that truly tastes like the matzah we all know (and love?). While we can’t guarantee the kosherness of your home kitchen, we can promise that you will be left with a tastier, fresher, and more interesting piece of matzah than anything from a box.

Ingredients

2 ⅛ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp kosher salt, plus more for optional matzah topping
1 Tbsp neutral oil*
⅓ cup + 8 Tbsp of warm water 

*Vegetable oil or a light tasting olive oil is preferred. Canola oil is not kosher for Passover in the Ashkenazi tradition. If you use extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil, you’ll be able to taste it. 

directions

Place a baking sheet upside down in your oven or a pizza steel/pizza stone in your oven, and preheat to 500 degrees. Once your oven reaches 500 degrees, let the baking sheet or the pizza steel/pizza stone heat for at least an hour, this will help to ensure that the matzah bakes quickly and gets really crispy.

Sift the flour into a medium bowl and mix in the salt, stirring to combine. Mix in the oil and water and stir to combine. If the dough is very dry and crumbly, and not holding together, continue adding the water, ½ tablespoon of water at a time until you have a firm elastic dough that holds together. Turn the dough out onto your kitchen counter and knead by hand until the dough is a smooth ball, this will take about 2 -3 minutes. Your dough won’t be as smooth after kneading as a bread dough and it’s okay if there are still a few bumps on the surface of the dough.

Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces. Using a rolling pin, roll each piece into a large circle as thin as you can get it, ideally about ¼ to ⅛ of an inch thick. Don’t flour your work surface as you roll out the matzah, but make sure to flip the dough as you roll it so it doesn’t stick to your work surface.

Using a fork, perforate the rolled out dough all over, piercing straight through the dough. Optionally, if you want to add more saltiness, brush the dough with a little water and sprinkle with kosher salt.

Carefully place the dough onto the preheated baking sheet or onto the pizza steel/pizza in the oven. Bake the matzah for 6 minutes, flipping halfway through the baking with tongs, until the matzah is browned in certain spots and slightly browned around the edges. Remove from the oven with tongs and place the matzah on a plate to cool. Continue with the other pieces of dough.

The matzah will keep in an airtight container or Ziploc bag at room temperature for up to 5 days. Serve with charoset, horseradish, or both!

4 pieces of matzah
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