Thursday, April 23, 2015

Farewell Rosie, Hello Matzah

The model for Rosie the Riveter died today, at age 92. Besides being a woman who deals with holes on a regular basis, what, you may ask, is the classic icon’s connection with this week’s baking project: matzah? I’ll tell you: BICEPS, baby, BICEPS!

If I had to choose someone with whom to flee those nasty Egyptians, and wander in the desert for forty years with only the sun on my back to bake my flattened bread, I’m counting on a woman like Rosie. She’s a can-do kind of girl. And with those muscles, I bet she could pound out a matzah faster than you could say “Let my people go.”

Back in the 40s, Rosie the Riveter changed the face of the war effort at home. This little baking project, while not exactly single-handedly taking on Hitler, still has defeated a fearsome foe of it’s own at the Passover table this year.

Slide over Streitz; move on, pasty Manishevitz. We don’t need your colon-clogging cardboard anymore. Oh, tender, homemade, sesame-tinged, peppery roundish matzah —where have you been all my life?

Despite the muscle needed to roll out the dough, I’d highly recommend that you make your own matzah for a Passover seder next year. It’s worth the extra effort. Please believe me. Your mother, your Great Aunt Rosie, and especially your biceps, will thank you. 

Here's the photo album:

Bronzed and gorgeous

Loving my new bread bags! Perfect for traveling to the seder.
On my mother's matzah plate
The process, from the Baking With Julia cook book, via the incomparable Lauren Groveman, really is quite simple (for the full recipe buy the book):

1. A quick mix for the dough (include the pepper and the sesame seeds – it needs them); no rising time for obvious reasons.
2. Divide the dough into smaller balls, and use those strong arms to roll it all out as thin as you possibly can.
3. Poke tons of holes in the dough with a fork.  
4. Bake each piece on an upside-down baking sheet for approximately one minute on each side. 

No problem. We're strong, capable, independent women (who may or may not have enlisted the help of a big strong husband to roll out the dough when the going got tough). Aren't we?

This project was part of the Tuesdays with Dorie bake-along. Check out other bakers' experiences here.

1 comment:

  1. I was sad to hear about the Rosie model :-(
    There is some thing about that campaign that resonates (and yes, I would want her around if I had to cross through parted seas)
    Nice bread bag! (and great looking matzah)


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