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Matzoh/Maṣṣa Recipe (Jewish Passover Bread)


SonOfNoun
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Hi I have a bit of an odd question.

 

I would like to bake Matzoh/Maṣṣa¹ and I have been doing so for quite some time. In order for it to be Kosher there are a few prerequisites (according to different traditions they may vary but I will list mine).

 

The ingredients can only be flour and water and the bread must be completed 20 mins after the kneading is done. In other words you have around 20 mins to shape the dough, roll it, place it in the oven, and be cooked.

 

I have been able to make it using 55 percentage water. Which has worked for me but I want to maximize it's full potential so I have a few questions.

 

Since it doesn't use yeast and does not have time to rise:

 

1. What Protein/gluten content would be most suitable more or less?

 

2. Would over-hydration of the flour and over kneading it till it is silky smooth be a good idea and what are the benefits if so?

 

3. How can I maximize the thickness and still keep it relatively soft and pliable?

 

4. What would be the best cooking method and why?

 

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¹ Matzoh/Maṣṣa is commonly known to be the cracker Jews eat on Passover but traditionally it used to be soft and there are Jews who didn't go to Europe after they were kicked out of israel during the second temple period who still make it soft.

 

 

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Without yeast, you are not going to get something fluffy or tall. I'd suggest you aim to achieve something close to a pita.

The higher the hydration the softer it'll be, up to a point where it won't form a dough.

If you are going for something pita like, I'd start at 60-65 g of water per 100g flour.

The more kneading and the higher the gluten, you'll be able to have more hydration but will also have a chewier result. I'd go with all purpose flour.

Without fermentation and salt, flavor is going to be a challenge. Cracker style matzo that you can buy baked at a very high heat so that they char a little and get flavor from browning. I suggest you do the same. However, since you use a wetter dough, you will get a soft result. Generally, hotter oven results in shorter baking, resulting in less drying and more pliability.

Also cover it with a moist towel once baked.

  • Thanks 1

~ Shai N.

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13 minutes ago, shain said:

If you are going for something pita like, I'd start at 60-65 g of water per 100g flour.

The more kneading and the higher the gluten, you'll be able to have more hydration but will also have a chewier result. I'd go with all purpose flour.

Thank you very much for responding! and yea Pita or Laffa looking Maṣṣa would be the goal here. 

I'm curious what salt would do to dough/bread if I were to add it to the mix. Also what does over kneading do to the dough exactly? Increase the gluten activation and make the dough less sticky? Could mixing be done by a machine or would I need to use my hands?

I hope it's ok that I am posting a link to two videos on how Jews traditionally made this bread. You could see it's EXTREMELY hydrated. But I'm trying to make this a bit more "factory" and "In home" friendly so to speak. So I'm trying to be exact with the method. 
 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, SonOfNoun said:

I'm curious what salt would do to dough/bread if I were to add it to the mix

 

Flavor it :) It will also negligibly slow gluten development. You can instead sprinkle the baked pita with finely ground salt while still hot - much like one do with french fries.

 

9 minutes ago, SonOfNoun said:

what does over kneading do to the dough exactly?

 

I'd avoid using the term "over kneading" - but the more you knead, the more gluten is developed (up to a point), resulting in a "stronger" more cohesive dough and a chewier end result. In raised bread, this is important for it to rise high, with you just need it to hold together.

Actual over kneading is when you knead so much that the gluten strands already formed start to break. This can only really happen with machine kneading and drier

I wouldn't worry about it.

 

13 minutes ago, SonOfNoun said:

Could mixing be done by a machine or would I need to use my hands?

 

A machine will make your work easier.

 

 

14 minutes ago, SonOfNoun said:

I hope it's ok that I am posting a link to two videos on how Jews traditionally made this bread. You could see it's EXTREMELY hydrated. But I'm trying to make this a bit more "factory" and "In home" friendly so to speak. So I'm trying to be exact with the method. 

 

Yes, that's how North African pitas are made. I'd estimate this dough to be 65-70% hydration - much like I suggest you use, or slightly higher. This is my favorite type of pita.

You might also notice that the ovens are very hot, and baking timer is short - this important to keep the pita from drying and having a bread-like crust.

 

 

~ Shai N.

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