Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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matzo a word which has now entered the English language from the Hebrew matzah (plural matzos or matzot), refers to the Jewish unleavened Passover ‘bread’, which is like a large oblong water biscuit.

To Jews, these are invested with special significance, and are the only flour products allowed at passover (Pesach). The matzos are baked in memory of the flight of the children of Israel from slavery in Egypt (Exodus 12):

And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt, for it was not leavened; because they were thrust out of Egypt and could not tarry, neither had they prepared for themselves any victual.