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Is there a difference between matzah and matzo?
No, it means the same thing. It's just a different transliteration/pronunciation of the same Hebrew word. The first is Sefardic pronunciation, and the second is Ashkenaz.
Similar to "Shabbat" vs. "Shabbos".
Similar to "Shabbat" vs. "Shabbos".
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No, manna was the "bread from the heavens" that the Israelites ate while wandering in the wilderness, and matzah was the unleavened bread that they made when leaving Egypt, an…d still make today for their Passover Festival.
Matzah is the official food of the Passover, steming from the creation of an unleavened bread that the Jewish people had to make in haste. As they were gathering up to leave E…gypt, and slavery, they only had time to make an unleavened bread. To sit and wait for yeast to rise would have taken too long, and they were instructed to hurry. There are many thoughts as to what the word really stands for but many believe that it stems from the word, mahar. Others indicate that it may come from the word for to squeeze, to suck, or dry out, due to it's dry nature. That word is - mazeh. The word Matza also has the same root as Mitzui, to realize potential and Chametz(leaven) has the same root as Hachmatza, to miss an opportunity. Matzah may be an illusion to the religious implications of both of those roots.
During Pesach (Passover), the ownership and consumption of chametz is strictly prohibited to Jews (Exodus ch.12); so strictly that the penalty for doing so is karet, spiri…tual excommunication from God. Chametz is any product made from one of the five grains (wheat, barley, spelt, rye and oats) which has come into contact with water for more than eighteen minutes, which would cause Chimutz (leavening). This includes pasta, bread, cookies, beer and non-Passover matzah, since all of them are in contact with water during manufacture. To be kosher for Pesach, matzah must be special shmurah ("observed" or "guarded") matzah, which means that the person who made them has kept a careful eye on them before and during baking to ensure that the matzah flour (which itself has been closely guarded against contact with water ever since the grain was harvested) is in contact with water for no more than eighteen minutes before it has finished baking (once baked, the five grains cannot become chametz). The baking is often carried out by chaburas (groups) of Orthodox Jewish men. This "guarded" method of manufacture is quite a bit more complex than the production of not-for-Pesach matzah; and so, when making matzah for use during the rest of the year, it is less expensive to make the type that are not kosher for Pesach since the Torah-laws against chametz do not apply at other times of the year. Simply, people like to eat matzah at times that are not Passover and the process to make non-Kosher for Passover Matzot is cheaper.
That depends on one's definition of healthy. Matzah is made from flour and water, that's it so it's neither healthy or unhealthy. Some attempts have been made to make matzah h…ealthier by using whole wheat and/or spelt instead of processed white wheat flour.
Matzah (מצה) is the Hebrew word for Jewish unleavened bread made with plain flour and water, and is associated with the Passover feast because it lacks the leaven that …should not be eaten or present in the house during that time.
Matzah has holes to prevent it from puffing up as Jews are not supposed to eat any leavened or puffed bread. There is no symbolism behind the holes. The reason air pockets a…re a problem is because it is possible that a piece of dough inside the air pocket might not cook within 18 minutes, and will be considered leavened (Chametz) which is forbidden for Jews to eat or own on Passover. (Some groups assume that regardless of perforation, there may be pockets of not fully cooked dough in matzah; this is why there is the issue of gebrokt/non-gebrokt.)
Matzo meal is made from flour, while corn meal comes from corn.
The Middle East
The name Matzo (or Matzah, or whatever) comes from the type of flour that is used. For Jews, during the week of Passover, no leavened breads are supposed to be eaten. Which me…ans no yeast, or leavening agents of any kind. Matzo is unleavened flour.
Matzo flour - or matzo meal - is flour used to make matzah, the cream-cracker-like unleavened bread eaten by many Jewish people and especially associated with Passover when Je…ws avoid certain foods that they might eat at other times. It's also used to make other dishes, including kneidlach (dumplings usually served in soup) and a variety of cakes and biscuits. It's usually wheat, but other grains can also be used.
When the Israelites escaped from Egypt, it happened so quickly that they didn't have time to let the dough for their bread rise. Instead, they baked the dough into flat cracke…rs. To remember this, matzah is eaten during the holiday of Passover.
The holes in matzah simply keep it from rising or becoming puffy. This is because the specification for Passover is that leavened and/or puffed bread is not allowed.
Matzah originated during the Jewish exodus from Egypt. The ten plagues got the Pharaoh to let the Jewish people go, and in their haste to leave they did not let their br…ead rise, creating matzah or unleavened bread
with peanut butter and jelly, butter and jelly, tuna fish, crushed up and eggs added and fried.
If - like me - you live in an area with few or no other Jews, kosher-for-Passover matzah can be quite difficult to find. Some supermarkets stock them if there's even a small l…ocal Jewish population, but if you have no shops specialising in kosher goods you may have to buy it through mail order. Google "kosher pesach matzah" and you should find a choice of companies that offer it for sale online - hopefully one of them will be able to mail a packet to wherever you live. This should be no problem at all if you live in the USA, EU, near large cities in South America or Australia but might prove trickier in the Middle East (except Israel, obviously) or parts of Asia, Africa and rural South America. Otherwise, you could make your own. In some areas, Jewish men form groups called chaburas who produce the special shmurah matzah ("guarded" - meaning production is closely supervised to ensure the flour has not been in contact with water for more than 18 minutes from start to finish, which would make it chametz - ie; prohibited during Passover - and therefore unsuitable for Passover use). However, it's a labour-intensive task and you'd need rabbinical supervision to be absolutely certain that your matzah were Passover kosher. Another way would be to make egg matzah, in which egg or fruit juice (not all egg matzah contain egg) in place of water, because although both eggs and fruit juice contain water they are not considered to make the matzah chametz. This would also be labour-intensive and you'd need to make sure you used only 100% fruit juice, not juice made from concentrate to which water has been added, as this will again make it chametz if the production process takes more than 18 minutes. To be absolutely certain your matzah are kosher, you would need rabbinical supervision once again, so it might be easiest if you just try to buy mail-order matzah online!
Matzah originated during the Israelites' exodus from Egypt, so yes, they did eat it.