Monday, April 11, 2011

Exodus Bread

Passover starts next Monday night, so for the occasion, we will be trying to make our own matzot. I've never done this before. The hand-rolling looks like madness.

According to Hebrew law and custom, the matzo must be unleavened, and contain no yeast. The problem is, all flour has some natural yeast in it. That is how a starter is made, from the traces of yeast micro-organisms naturally residing in grain (yeast micro-organisms can also picked up by the starter from the air). So my theory is that the Israelites likely mixed their bread with an organic starter containing yeast, molded it into sheets, then set it on their backs to bake in the sun as they escaped from Egypt. The bread may not have had time to rise, but it did likely contain some starter, and probably tasted better than store-bought matzo. I just did a test batch last night and the results were good. I added a little semolina flour, some olive oil, and brushed the top with olive oil and sprinkled with kosher salt.

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